| Not So Great
Stanley Cup a long shot for
2/13/08 - By Paul Krill
season, I, and probably most of you, had great expectations for the Sharks. The
team was built to win it all; it was no longer time for building and rebuilding
but time for a championship. But in the end, the Sharks bowed out early again
in another disappointing second-round playoff series defeat.
year, my expectations are not so high. Let's face it: Unless Vancouver can
eliminate Detroit , Anaheim , Dallas and Calgary , setting up the Sharks to
play the Canucks in the Western Conference Finals, then it doesn't look so good
for the Sharks.
Yes, the Sharks can beat up on Vancouver and Minnesota
and beat Columbus in OT. But once the Sharks play one of those tough teams
mentioned in the previous paragraph, it seems like almost an automatic loss for
our South Bay heroes of the ice, especially at home.
Unfortunately, the Sharks are probably going to have to face one or
more of these teams on the way to the Stanley Cup Finals. If the regular season
is any indication, that is the point when the Sharks would hop off the Stanley
There's always the chance the Sharks would get red-hot in
the playoffs and crush all teams in their path. Or that Vancouver or some other
team would, indeed, clear the path for the Sharks. But this is not a wager
anyone would make.
So, perhaps we should just enjoy the upcoming
Stanley Cup Playoffs, as short as they might be for the Sharks. It looks like
our post-season run could begin and end in April.
It was reported that the Sharks-Predators game
Saturday was moved up a half hour to help the Predators beat the infamous San
Jose airport curfew. For me, I have mixed feelings about that issue. On one
hand, the curfew is clearly incompatible with the rigors of NHL travel.
Preventing teams from landing or taking off at the
local airport after 11:30 pm? It just seems absurd. But then, there's the other
side of the coin. I live in the Rosemary Gardens section of San Jose , which is
pinched between First Street on one side and Route 87, and, yes, San Jose 's
airport on the other.
With the airport being my neighbor, the curfew
benefits me greatly. But another perspective is that the Sharks probably have
one of the most convenient airports in the league; it's a straight 7-10-minute
drive from the arena to the airport. But teams just can't use the place all the
time, in which case they have to bus down from or up to Oakland 's airport.
That probably takes 40 minutes or less in the middle of the night. I know the
main airports in places such as Dallas and Chicago are not so close to the
arenas in those cities.
I am not sure if there is a solution to the
San Jose airport issue other than for the Sharks and the other teams to just
deal with it or figure out a way to beat the curfew. Take quicker showers,
Contact Paul at at firstname.lastname@example.org
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