Welcome to the 28th Game Day Fire Drill, for this, Calgary’s 76th game of the season on March 28, 2009.
Oh good. The Sharks.
Usually I say this type of thing sarcastically and, given the Sharks’ record to this point in the season (hint: best in the league), I can see why you’d take it that way.
But I’m actually serious that I’m happy to be playing the San Jose Sharks right now. Here’s why:
Everyone on the team is injured. Patrick Marleau didn’t even make the trip to Calgary, Rob Blake has a hip injury and didn’t skate Saturday, Marcel Goc is playing on a bum knee, Ryane Clowe (a Flames killer if there ever was one) has been out since March 17, Torrey Mitchell has been out with postconcussion syndrome since September, Mike Grier has a knee injury and will miss the remainder of the regular season, Claude Lemieux has a fractured jaw and is unlikely to play tonight, Tomas Plihal is day-to-day and Kent Huskins still hasn’t played a game since Dec. 31.
In short, they’re banged up.
Also, they’ve given away points away from the Shark Tank like it’s going out of style. They’ve won just once in regulation in their last eight road games (I’m sure the injuries have a lot to do with that) and are giving up more than three goals a game in those.
So, shocking though it may be, I’m actually optimistic that the Flames can beat these bums tonight. And if they don’t beat them, I’ll never wear a life vest again.
The Calgary Flames (43-26-6 for 92 points. Third in the West, first in the Northwest) and the San Jose Sharks (49-15-11 for 109 points. First in the West, first in the Pacific).
7:30 p.m. Mountain time and 9:30 p.m. Eastern time. All other time zones should lol in the internetz (why is that so funny?).
Pengrowth Saddledome, Calgary, Alberta
Calgary is 25-9-4 at home this year, and has won five of the last seven at the Saddledome. The Sharks are a pretty decent 18-12-7 on the road and have won just one of their last three games in Calgary.
What (to hate about the Sharks):
Jeremy Roenick —Loudmouth.
Joe Thornton — Dumb as a rock. Here’s a funny Thornton story or two to illustrate this fact:
- Pat Burns, his first coach in the NHL, once famously said that Thornton’s lucky he’s a hockey prodigy, because he’d be moving pianos for a living if he wasn’t.
- Earlier this year, a bunch of Sharks were being interviewed for a thing to show on the Jumbotron. The question asked of everyone was, “What would you do if you didn’t play hockey?” Everyone had their own little funny answers, except Thornton, who thought very hard for a second before replying, “Professional athlete.” He is as dumb as they come.
Devin Setoguchi, Jody Shelley and Ryane Clowe — Girls’ names.
Todd McLellan — Not as good as Jamie McLennan. Also, he looks like the evil game show host from Slumdog Millionaire.
Teal uniforms — Appalling mid-90s sports trend. Must be stomped out.
They’re going to win — Put it this way: The Sharks have not-won 26 games this year. Two of those were against Calgary. As a stat geek, I gotta think probability states that this trend has to swing back the other way.
Because you’ll fall asleep if you don’t keep yourself occupied. Enjoy the game and pop a few pep pills in the comments section.