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Sunday, Sunday
Odd timing set for Sharks first home playoff game
4/29/13 - By Paul Krill -

The Sharks will play their first home playoff game on a Sunday evening in this post-season. Not Saturday evening or Sunday afternoon but Sunday evening. This is a minor inconvenience, since it kind of rules out bringing school-age children to the game since as we know, playoff games can take a long time to finish if the game goes into overtime. I'm trying to think of any Sharks Sunday evening home games played in the past but I can't seem to remember any.

Anyway, while I like the matchup - the Sharks were 3-0 against Vancouver this year - I don't like how the Sharks lost their last two games of the season and amassed just three goals in those two away games. The Sharks were a far weaker team on the road (8-14-2) than they were at home (17-2-5) than they were at home but on the road is where they will begin.

How the Sharks do this year remains to be seen, of course. Will it be another playoff flameout like so many times in the past? We don't know yet. It could really go either way. But I don't think too many people will be placing bets on the Sharks to win it all this season. They have descended from conference finals losers two years ago to first-round losers last year and again not having home ice advantage in this abbreviated season.

As Sharks fans for two decades, we've fallen into the category of fans who deserve better than we get, in that we're there every night every year for the team but our squad remains one of a dwindling number of teams that's never even made it to the Stanley Cup Finals. (Fans in Anaheim, meanwhile, have witnessed two Cup finals and won a Cup in the past 10 years while their team ranked 25th out of 30 teams in attendance this season. Sour grapes? Call it what you want.) Who'd have thought it would be 2013 and the Sharks have still never hosted a Cup finals game?

But here we go again. If Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau can raise their game and Logan Couture and Antti Niemi can maintain theirs, wonderful things might happen. Otherwise, we'll still be the NHL's version of the Chicago Cubs: Wonderful fans but a not-so-wonderful track record when it comes to titles. Hopefully, we won't be waiting more than 100 years for a title like Cubs fans. For now, it's time to get another playoff season under way.

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