10 Issues Sharks Followers Ought to Be Grateful For
As a Sharks fan, there’s not a ton to be grateful for in relation to the on-ice product. In spite of everything, the Sharks are on the backside of the league and have a objective differential that rivals the worst in NHL historical past. To place it mildly, the Sharks will not be doing properly.
Nonetheless, Thanksgiving is a time to be grateful for what you’ve, not lament what you may have had or what you’ve misplaced. With that in thoughts, I threw collectively this checklist of issues Sharks followers should be grateful for on Thanksgiving.
1. The Sharks have the perfect odds of receiving the primary draft decide in 2024
The silver lining to the Sharks’ abysmal report nearly a quarterway by means of the season is that San Jose has the perfect odds of successful the draft lottery. 25.5% are the present odds that the Sharks will obtain the primary total decide and with the brand new guidelines, the Sharks can’t decide any decrease than third total.
Meaning San Jose has a reasonably good shot at bringing Macklin Celebrini again to the Bay Space to play for the skilled model of his former junior staff. Celebrini is a beast, scoring 22 factors in 11 video games whereas taking part in his first yr of faculty hockey on the age of 17. He’s acquired loads of ties to the Bay Space, which makes this an ideal story for the Sharks and the NHL (trace, trace). Now we simply want these bouncing ping pong balls to make it occur.
2. San Jose’s prospect pool
Regardless of the place the Sharks draft this summer season, it’s sure so as to add to a prospect pool that’s already a lot deeper underneath Common Supervisor Mike Grier. By means of trades and drafting, Grier and the remainder of the Sharks’ entrance workplace have added expertise on the blueline within the likes of Calen Addison, Ty Emberson, Shakir Mukhamadullin, Nikita Okhotiuk, Leon Gawanke and Luca Cagnoni, amongst others.
On the entrance finish, Filip Bystedt has regressed however may nonetheless discover his strategy to North America within the subsequent yr or two. Will Smith is proving that final season within the USHL was not an aberration, whereas Quentin Musty and Kasper Halttunen are lighting up the OHL. And people are simply the gamers that Grier has added. Daniil Gushchin, Brandon Coe and Ozzy Wiesblatt are all taking part in with the Barracuda and ready for his or her shot.
There’s a pipeline of grade-A expertise in San Jose’s prospect pool, one thing we have now not seen shortly.
3. The goaltending tandem of Mackenzie Blackwood and Kaapo Kahkonen
Sure, the Sharks are dropping, but it surely might be so much worse. This tweet from JFresh a number of days in the past reveals simply how dangerous it may have been.
Staff Goaltending – November 19 pic.twitter.com/g08fpr0cR9
— JFresh (@JFreshHockey) November 19, 2023
Regardless of the Sharks being final within the league in targets allowed per sport, the staff is a good twentieth in targets saved above anticipated. That’s because of Mackenzie Blackwood and Kaapo Kahkonen, who’ve stored the Sharks in video games the staff had no enterprise being in.
If it weren’t for them, there can be much more damaged TVs.
4. Among the best radio and tv groups within the enterprise
When you didn’t know already, the Hockey Corridor of Fame confirmed it earlier this month when Sharks radio play-by-play announcer Dan Rusanowsky obtained the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award. It’s an award given to distinctive members of the NHL media and it features a place within the Hockey Corridor of Fame. Rusanowsky has referred to as the play-by-play for the Sharks for the reason that staff joined the NHL in 1991.
You may watch a few of Rusanowsky’s Corridor of Fame induction luncheon right here.
The remainder of the Sharks’ broadcast staff carries their very own weight. Randy Hahn is outstanding within the tv play-by-play and Drew Remenda and Brett Hedican supply nice insights as the colour commentators. The addition of Tara Sloan has solely enhanced the viewing expertise.
Sharks followers may do so much worse.
5. A staff that believes “Hockey is for everybody”
When the NHL determined to ban all theme nights in the summertime, bending to the stress of some, the Sharks group didn’t simply throw up its arms and say, “Oh, properly.” As an alternative, Common Supervisor Mike Grier dedicated to do all the pieces the staff may to remain throughout the NHL’s tips whereas nonetheless celebrating the range of the Sharks’ group.
“I believe type of the principle factor is that we’re nonetheless going to have a good time all of the months – Pleasure Month and Black Historical past Month and our Hispanic and Asian populations. We’re going to have a good time all these nights simply as a lot as we might usually simply with out the jerseys,” mentioned Grier on June 27. “It’s crucial for us to be an inclusive group and being in San Jose and the San Francisco space, I believe it’s essential for our followers as properly.
“So we’re going to place simply as a lot effort into celebrating and having these nights and celebrating these folks and cultures as we usually would,” continued Grier. “You recognize so far as the jersey factor goes, I believe, whether or not you disagree with folks or not I believe you must type of respect folks’s views and opinion on sure issues. I believe the league is attempting to try this the perfect they’ll. However like I mentioned, for us, it’s crucial that these communities all really feel and know the way a lot we assist them and admire them and wish to assist them.”
That’s the place it began, however when the NHL determined to take issues a step additional and ban issues like coloured stick tape (most particularly Pleasure tape), it was not Grier however the gamers who stepped ahead and spoke out concerning the newest ban. Sharks ahead Anthony Duclair was one of many extra vocal gamers concerning the subject, telling San Jose Hockey Now’s Sheng Peng that the transfer was “puzzling.” It was partly due to responses like Duclair’s that the league finally reversed course on its nonsensical ban.
However I might argue it goes again additional than that. Final season, when James Reimer determined he wouldn’t put on a Pleasure jersey and wouldn’t take part within the pregame, the Sharks made him clarify himself. In contrast to different groups that shielded their gamers from the media or folded to the interior stress and did away with the pregame jerseys altogether, the Sharks stayed the course. The staff wore the jerseys. The leaders supported the choice to put on the jerseys. Most of all, they made Reimer personal his choice and face the media.
6. Nonetheless residence to probably the greatest logos within the league
Hear, I get that folks just like the classics. There’s one thing nostalgic about seeing that maple leaf or the winged wheel. There’s a bit of historical past there. However let’s face it, taken on their very own and never as a illustration of a hockey staff, they are often fairly boring. When you had a non-hockey fan take a look at all of the logos collectively, I’m unsure they’d select the classics.
Nonetheless, a shark chomping on a hockey stick? That’s badass.
7. Sharks Ice in San Jose
Nestled in an industrial space simply south of Downtown San Jose, it’s simple to overlook Sharks Ice. Nonetheless, Sharks followers ought to take a minute to acknowledge simply how fortunate they’re to have a fancy like this in San Jose. There are six completely different ice rinks in a single space which suggests there’s room for a sturdy youth hockey league, grownup hockey, school hockey, skating classes and public skates. There’s no battling it out for ice time the best way a number of different cities should.
What’s extra, what number of followers can say they’ll take their children to hockey apply and perhaps run into Joe Thornton, Mike Ricci, Mike Grier, Evgeni Nabokov or one of many different Sharks alumni that also hold across the rink?
Sharks followers are blessed.
8. “Jumbo” Joe Thornton
Talking of Jumbo, take a minute to do not forget that you bought to observe the longer term first poll corridor of fame play in his prime. Thornton’s thread the needle passes and edgy play was one thing Sharks followers acquired to expertise on a nightly foundation. This bearded magnificence was so chill that you just nearly didn’t understand that he was probably the greatest to ever play the sport.
Thornton was simply unreal. Mid-thirties and nonetheless the perfect passer in hockey, large possession man too. though I assume the 2014 playoffs kinda tarnished the legacy a bit https://t.co/gByCEc7uM1 pic.twitter.com/LUjhkgn8PR
— JFresh (@JFreshHockey) November 21, 2023
We have been blessed to observe Joe Thornton do Joe Thornton issues for thus a few years, and right this moment, we must always look again on that.
9. The San Jose Barracuda
Typically, NHL video games are costly, particularly when the Sharks are successful. So, getting low-priced AHL tickets within the spectacular Tech CU Enviornment is a perk that followers ought to admire. It’s a chance to take the entire household to a hockey sport with out breaking the financial institution.
Plus, you get to see the longer term Sharks in motion.
10. 4 within the web, tacos you get
I favored getting pizza a few decade in the past, however I’m definitely not going to show my again on tacos. Whereas the cases the place we get tacos are few and much between, the straightforward concept that I may get tacos brings me pleasure.
Each time the Sharks rating three targets at residence, a buzz builds inside SAP Heart. It doesn’t matter if the opposite staff has seven targets or two. The chants of “We wish tacos” echo all through the constructing. Whether or not for or in opposition to the Sharks, the gang is introduced collectively in a unified objective…Free tacos.