GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLIIIIIIIIEEEEEEEE

I AM ABSOLUTELY SO EXTREMELY HAPPY RIGHT NOW!!!

John Scott and Scott Hannan are NOT BEING RE-SIGNED. Burish was waived and then bought out. We did pretty good in the draft (I, for one, am happy about our adorable 1st round pick and am looking forward to seeing him play. HE ALSO THINKS A HOT DOG IS A SANDWICH FOR GORDSAKE). Swedish Pavs (aka Melker Karlsson) was re-signed. Dillon was re-signed. Traded Niemi’s rights to Dallas (and then they signed him…SUCKERS!). We DID NOT trade for Bieksa. Now we traded for Martin Jones.

GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

France+v+Canada+2015+IIHF+Ice+Hockey+World+NF2ab__GYodl

I have no complaints as of now.

SUCK IT LA! THANK YOU BOSTON!


Update: We have since signed Free Agents Paul Martin and Joel Ward. I like both. While the 4 years for Martin is concerning (as he’s 34), he’s a good defenseman and will help our sad blue line. Ward is a player I’ve always liked and I’m happy he’s going to be in teal. Really hoping that this will make sure that Marleau is never on the PK ever again because he really isn’t that good at it. WE HAVE DEPTH!!! I’m looking forward to a 3rd line possibly consisting of Ward-Wingels-Tierney/Hertl/Timo (pretty much any of those will do). Also Martin with Burns will hopefully make me not sad at seeing Burns’ talent wasted on D when he is an extremely effective forward on Jumbo’s line.

We also signed this Cundari fellow who I know nothing about except he has nice AHL numbers and will most likely go to the AHL and I look forward to watching him play. (I plan on going to a few Barracuda games to see our baby Sharks play that aren’t ready for the big boy league). From what I understand he’s underrated because of his size (5’9) and being a shorter person, I hate that narrative. Especially when you have guys like Johnny Hockey and Tyler Johnson out there tearing shit up.

I also still love the Martin Jones trade despite it being for an unprotected draft pick. THE PRESSURE TO MAKE THE PLAYOFFS IS REAL FOLKS!


PS: We should never have traded Demers.

Free Agent-palooza (NHL Sharks edition)

Looking at what’s ahead (since playoffs are not as fun as they could be) I’m looking at upcoming UFA/RFA for the Sharks.

UFA’s I want gone:

johnscottcaptainhammer

John Scott, while funny and I’m sure is a very nice man, is nothing but a goon and has probably peaked with 3 goals in a season.

Niemi has outlived his welcome and is nothing but average. He’ll be a fabulous backup somewhere else in the NHL or go over to a European league/KHL, but he has no business being a starter anymore.

I have a feeling Hannan retires after this season, if not then he’ll have a hard time finding a job unless some team really does need a veteran presence on the blueline that will play very limited minutes in a limited amount of games. Looking at you Chicago.

UFA that I want to stay:

Matt Irwin, he’s the only one and has shown so much improvement from 2014 to 2015. Went from 2 goals and 19 points in 62 games with a +5 to 8 goals and 19 points in 53 games with a +3. He went through dry spells and was a healthy scratch quite often. Not until we traded Demers and Hannan was injured did he really get his time to shine with 16 of his 19 points coming in that time frame. Not saying he should get a giant contract or anything, but if he can find a way to continue this trend he’ll be a solid 3rd pairing guy. It’ll also help to have him not paired with Hannan, who is slower than molasses, but have him paired with Tennyson or a similar player. For example: even strength CF% jumps from 46.7% with Hannan to 53.7% with Tennyson. That also looks worse with the eye test than it does on paper as well. Irwin, when used properly, is a valuable player for what he is and I’d like to see him stay. Unless of course we can get a really really good return for him. But whoever could possibly trade him for better be an upgrade or what’s the point. He finally started playing like I thought he’d be capable the few seasons before.

Long list of RFA’s:

Brenden Dillon. Holy crap he’s good. He’s a big boy at 6’4 225 and he’s only 24 years old. He still has a lot to learn and can be just as much of a defensive liability as Burns, but this can and should be taught out of him. He may always be subject to little mistakes, but with help can minimize these. Especially if the team does what’s right and moves Burns back to forward and then Dillon won’t run the risk to be paired with him. The fancystats numbers don’t show it quite so much (they do have their flaws with all the good they can do), but this pairing was the most disastrous, which is probably why they switched him to be teamed up with Braun after a time. He has a bright future ahead of him and DW or whoever replaces him will be an idiot to not kick him down a contract.

Melker Karlsson. I cannot say enough good things about this kid and take to calling him #SwedishPavs. He has amazing vision and hockey smarts and is always at the right place at the right time. So similar to Pavelski it’s ridiculous. I know, and have been told many times by others in hockey twitter, that his numbers are most likely inflated by simply being on the same line with Joe Thornton. They also say this about Pavelski. But I truly believe Pavs can score a 30-40 goal season centering his own line. I also believe Karlsson can do just as well on the 2nd or 3rd line. Our lack of depth is a problem and his wonderfulness helps this. I don’t think he’ll slow down next season being on a different line and prove the naysayers wrong. And unless there is a drop in his play, I will continue to refer to him as #SwedishPavs.

Fedun, Stollery, Rumpel. Fedun could develop into a solid 3rd pairing defenseman, Stollery I know next to nothing about, and Rumpel is a goalie who has an amazing name. Seriously…his name is Rumpel. How awesome is that. Goaltending will forever be an issue and the best thing would be to develop from within. I don’t know too much about what goes on as far as the AHL level, but apart from trading them away for whatever, I see all of these guys sticking around and I look forward to see them when I go to Barracuda games next year. (I also really want to see Goldobin play and if they don’t fuck him up, this is where Goldy will be playing)


With all that being in the Sharks court (so to speak) the free agency market could be very interesting this year. Depending on how cap-strapped other teams get. I am just hoping beyond hope that DW or his replacement actually do something worthwhile and benefiting the team, unlike last years signing of John Scott. Defense/Goaltending are where it’s needed more but a stud forward (again…if Burns isn’t moved back there like he should be) would be pretty dope. Like the pipe-dream of somehow stealing away Saad from Chicago or lucking out and getting a top pick in the draft and drafting McDavid or Eichel. I just don’t want a repeat of this past season because that was fucking brutal to watch most of the time.


Another thing of note (while I’m thinking about these things) is all the talk I hear of how Couture and Marleau don’t get along. No one can show me anything in writing or interviews and it’s all “off the record” stuff. Apparently this is common knowledge and just begs the question: Why are they on a line together when team chemistry is in question? For a stretch Marleau and Pavelski switched lines and the team was not the worse for it during that stretch. I’m having trouble finding the numbers but if I remember right, I was questioning why they switched back. It’s just more reasons why the season has been a clusterfuck and another in a growing list of things to fix in the offseason. It’s also why, even though he’s a favorite of mine, I’d be OK (depending on the return) if we traded Cooch in the offseason. He had a quietly good year and posted up more points than even Thornton, although if he hadn’t bee injured that might not be the case.

(Update edit: “chemistry” may not be the right word to use in this situation, I only am using this in reference to what DW said about the players saying they felt like coworkers and not teammates. And the pair of Cooch and Patty did not play as well this season as before, mainly because of Patty’s down year, but unless they’re producing ,which they weren’t most of the time, why keep two guys who don’t like each other on the same line? that was all I was saying.)


But there’s so much time to talk about this, I’m sure we’ll all be sick of it by the time it happens.


Also, looking at contracts, seeing Mike Brown having one year left fills me with dread. I’m all for fighting in the game, but not for guys who have no value other than to fight. Goons are so last millennium and need to be done away with. If we can even get a bag of pucks or a coupon to Tim Horton’s, I’ll take it.

PS. Still irrationally upset we traded Demers, no matter how awesome Dillon is.

download (4)

Playoff time…Ho hum…

My bracket:

I’ll go over my picks. Round 1:

Western Conference

BLUES vs Wild. I’m going with Blues, not just because I feel they’ll go all the way, but there isn’t an easier team to beat in the first round. Sure Minnesota has Dubnyk and that’s been a wonderful story all season, but do they really have what it takes to go past round 1? I doubt it. If they were playing anyone other than the Avs last year, would they have gotten to the 2nd round then? I doubt it. Parise is good, but his supporting players are questionable. The only thing that makes me a little worried about my decision is that 42 of the Wild’s 46 wins were in regulation or overtime. But really, that doesn’t mean too much when the Blues won their division. Blues also have more pieces that can be truly dangerous. Backes, Tarasenko, Oshie, Steen, Schwartz. And those are just a few. Wild aren’t terrible, which is why I think they’ll go down in 6. Maybe 7 but I think the Blues won’t let it get that far.

Nashville vs CHICAGO. This is one where I think goaltending won’t be what wins the series. Rinne is superior to Crawford in so many ways, Crawford is nothing but above average and Rinne is arguably elite. But when it comes down to it HE IS MARION HOSSA AND YOU ARE NOT. Toews is wonderful and although I’m a hater, Kane should be back and that guy is really good. Saad is one of my new favorite non-Sharks players in the league. Kid’s got a good future ahead of him. Preds will put up a fight and it’ll be very entertaining but Blackhawks will win in 7.

DUCKS vs Jets. I loathe the Ducks. With a passion that is only rivaled by my hatred for the Kings. But in this, I give it to the Ducks. Goaltending will win this one. I do, however, look forward to the many Corey Perry and Getzlaf tantrums during the one inevitable loss they suffer in this round. Ducks win in 5. Winnipeg continues to be irrelevant. \

Canucks vs FLAMES. I absolutely love Johnny Gaudreau. He is a delight to watch and a gift to the NHL. He will have a hell of a series and combined with Hiller and if the Flames can ice a roster that isn’t too full of GRIT and guys who are only GOOD IN THE ROOM, they can easily take the Canucks. Lack is good but will forever be a backup much like my beloved Stalock. Even with Miller coming back after I believe the 1st game, they don’t stand a chance. Maybe the Sedins use their creepy twin powers and get lots of points. And maybe Bo Horvat has a great playoffs. But Calgary is riding a wave of PDO driven luck and it’ll continue for quite awhile I believe. They’ll go far. Plus Fuck the Canucks they lose in game 7 in a very heartbreaking fashion causing me to laugh uncontrollably.

Eastern Conference

CANADIENS vs Senators. This is another that will undoubtedly be won by goaltending. Holy crap on a cracker Carey Price is good. He is by far and away the Vezina winner this year. He leads the league in every goalie category. Hammond has had a great run and also been a great story during the end of the season, but let’s face it, he’s just not as good. Add in the Habs having PK Subban, Pacioretty, Markov, Desharnais and they’re pretty tough to beat. Did I mention CAREY PRICE IS LIKE REALLY REALLY REALLY GOOD??? Yeah, they’re sweeping and it’ll be fun to watch.

Lightning vs RED WINGS. I don’t like the Red Wings on principle, but I’ll give this one to them in 7. Nyquist and Tatar are reason enough even without Zetterberg, Datsyuk, Kronwall, Abdelkader, Helm…you get the idea. Stamkos is good and will hold them to a full series along with some of their rookies having good campaigns, but they don’t stand a chance to go into the 2nd round. And it hurts to pick Detroit on this one.

RANGERS vs Penguins. DAN BOYLE WILL BE A PLAYOFF HERO IN THE FIRST ROUND AND THERE IS NOTHING YOU CAN DO ABOUT THIS! OK…so that will probably not happen but Rangers have 2 ex-Sharks so I have to root for them in this round. Shep could be a solid 4th guy line for them and depth is key in the post season, like it always is. I also wanted Pens to not make it for not lottery protecting the pick they traded away and I’m not about to start cheering them on now. Rangers in 6.

Capitals vs ISLANDERS. I have loved what the Islanders have been doing the last few years, even when it seemed like their moves made absolutely no sense and their fans got all in an uproar. Starting with the Moulson trade, everything they did was good for their rebuild around Tavares and that’s why they’re in the playoffs now. They were my Eastern pick early in the season and I’m just relieved they made it so I at least could call that much. Tavares is one of the best in the league and in my opinion doesn’t get enough love. Probably because he plays for the Islanders. When they traded for Leddy and for Boychuk, they simply did what I wanted the Sharks to do and it’s paid off immensely. So good for them. I really like Ovechkin (best shooter in the world) and Holtby is my 2nd favorite goalie in the league (after Price of course) but the supporting cast in NY is what’s going to get them to the finals and the Caps will continue to be Sharks East. Which is too bad because I REALLY REALLY REALLY DO LIKE OVECHKIN. Series goes to 6 games.

Round 2:

BLUES vs Chicago. Even Hossa will be no match for Backes. Because Backes. Kane will continue to make me hate him by not doing much of anything and Toews will look very very sad right before the handshake line. Blues win because Backes. (Sorry Desi…no cup for you)

Ducks vs FLAMES. Flames win this one because their crazy luck will still be going and Ducks will continue to have tantrums on the ice. Hiller beats his old team because that’s what the playoffs are for and all the Anaheim fans will forget hockey is in their town on their way back to Disneyland.

CANADIENS vs Red Wings. Price will continue to be perfect and Red Wings will run out of octopus…octopi…octopuses…whatever, they lose and Zetterberg’s beard will be sad.

Rangers vs ISLANDERS. Sorry to my ex-Sharks on the team but they won’t last against the might that could be the Islanders. Isles have an ex-Shark too so I won’t feel too bad about it all. Kennedy was vastly misused in San Jose but that’s a different story. Islanders win because Tavares will have a great series.

Conference Finals:

BLUES vs Flames. This is where the Flames luck will run out. Maybe they’ll take it to 7 games, maybe they’ll get swept. Either way, Johnny Hockey will have a great run and cement his place in all of our hearts. Blues continue to win because Backes.

Canadiens vs ISLANDERS. Price is still human and can’t be perfect all the time. Unfortunately PK Subban is also human and can’t be perfect all the time. Even if there are no significant injuries to either team by this point, the Habs’ defense can falter and will falter. Islanders win in 7 because Price is still elite and won’t make it easy for the red-headed stepchild of NY teams.

STANLEY CUP FINALS:

BLUES vs Islanders. Backes wins Conn Smythe and retires to run a SPCA.

No matter what happens, the 2015 playoffs are gonna sure be interesting. I could be so wrong about all my picks and get nothing right because that’s how sports works. Either way the playoffs will be stress free as my team didn’t even make it. As a Sacramento Kings fan I am used to this feeling. (shit, even as a Raiders fan I’m used to this feeling) I would rather see my team choke, yet again, than be left out of the party alltogether but maybe…just maybe…this will be fixed in the offseason and next year will be better.

(IS IT OCTOBER YET?)