Kukla's Korner Hockey
Dan Boyle of the San Jose Sharks participated in an NHL tele-conference today.
Q. Your departure from Tampa Bay was probably a little bit unpleasant at the time. Any regrets now?
DAN BOYLE: No, not anymore (laughter). Like you said, ‘at the time.’ I just signed a six-year extension, was planning to be there for a while. But certainly having seen the way some guys have been treated and what’s gone on so far, and the way on top of it I’ve been treated here, I have no regrets whatsoever.
Q. Why is San Jose better than Detroit this season?
DAN BOYLE: Well, I mean, our records are pretty similar. I think we have the edge so far. Honestly, depth I think is probably the biggest key. We have four lines, we have six D. When our top goalie Nabby got hurt, our backup goalie came in and did a great job. We’ve been lucky as far as health-wise, we’ve been pretty injury-free. You know, we’ll see. I mean, it’s a long season. We’ll see what happens. At the end of June, that’s what matters.
from Randy Hahn at the Seagate Broadcaster Blog,
General managers, coaches and even players talk about keeping an even keel. Don’t get too excited with the victories and don’t get too down in the dumps when you lose. But what about the rest of us? Are we supposed to stay on an even keel too? For those of us who don’t have a financial stake in the team, the Sharks are ENTERTAINMENT! Why can’t we flip out a little that they’ve made all-time National Hockey League history with their incredible first third of the season?
I’m not talking about being front runners. I’m not saying that we should start drawing up the parade route around the Fairmont Hotel and Plaza De Cesar Chavez Park. I’m talking about enjoying the emotional rollercoaster that every NHL season is. And right now the Sharks are on top of the rollercoaster, so why not live it up a little?
from San Jose Magazine,
Last spring, the morning after the Detroit Red Wings—the team he was assistant coaching—won the highly coveted Stanley Cup, Todd McLellan called San Jose Sharks Executive Vice President and General Manager Doug Wilson to set up an interview for the head coach’s position. It was 6 a.m., and McLellan was running on only an hour of sleep after celebrating the Red Wings’ victory into the wee hours of the morning. Opportunity had struck, and he wasn’t going to waste a minute in advancing his career to the next level.
“It’s human nature for people to stay within their comfort zone,” he says of himself and the players he coaches. “I believe that the exceptional professional finds a way to elevate his way outside those limits.”
from Spector’s Blog at Fox Sports,
Please note that the following is merely just speculation on my part and isn’t based on any reports I’ve read or heard. It’s merely based on a discussion I recently had with a friend of mine, who suggested the possibility of the Sharks trading Jonathan Cheechoo to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Here’s the basis of his opinion:
• Cheechoo isn’t producing the numbers he once did when he was on the Thornton line
• The Sharks obviously aren’t hurting because of his drop in production, and I think he may have missed the last game or more…not sure though
• Cheechoo eats up 3.5 million per
from John Kreiser of NHL.com,
Now that the San Jose Sharks have tied the 1943-44 Montreal Canadiens’ mark for the most points in the season’s first 25 games, they’re a lock for the Stanley Cup, right?
Well — not quite.
The Sharks have been devouring opponents in the season’s first two months. Their 22-3-1 record is the best in the NHL, as is their 14-0-1 record at HP Pavilion. San Jose is the only team that hasn’t lost a home game in regulation, and the Sharks are 22-0-2 in their last 24 games at the Shark Tank.
continued and some talk regarding other teams too…
added 12:07pm, from Craig Simpson of Blogs and Columns at CBC,
Regular-season success might keep the building full and give the fans an exciting 82 games to watch, but winning games well into May and June is what every team in the NHL covets.
That is something that the Sharks have yet to prove they can do, and until they do, their continued regular-season success only add to the pain and disappointment of their early playoff exits.
The only measure of victory left for this franchise is to win the Stanley Cup, and it can’t come quickly enough for their loyal fans.
from Drew Rememda of the Seagate Broadcaster Blog,
You people in the chatrooms make me laugh. Not like you’re a clown, here to amuse me.. but I’m just saying…All I did last night (Tuesday) was opine that the NHL culture of defending a teammate that has been dropped by a perfectly clean bodycheck, 100% within the rules of the game is curious even ridiculous. The incident that was my jumping off point was Luke Schenn hammering Tomas Plihall right at the end of the game with a perfectly clean hit. A hit that Tomas called “great”. Marcel Goc rushed to confront Schenn and a small pushing and shoving match ensued. I questioned the legitimacy of Goc’s reaction.
I had the debate with Jeremy Roenick this morning at Sharks Ice. Just a note we didn’t yell, insult or question each others manhood. My basic question. Do you need to confront or fight every player who delivers a clean hit to a teammate?
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
In an interview, (Doug) Wilson listed three primary factors for the Sharks’ strong play — tactical changes by the coaching staff, the overall personnel upgrades and the growth or improvement of his team’s holdover players, many of whom had discouragingly average performances last season.
From the first day of training camp, McLellan stressed a more aggressive fore-check and less play on the perimeter. He especially wanted to see more shots directed toward the net. Last year, Detroit led the league by a wide margin in terms of overall shots on goal. That was a philosophy McLellan imported to his new gig.
It helps that Blake and Boyle both demonstrate strong offensive sensibilities from their defensive positions. Last year, the Sharks received only 113 scoring points all season from their top six defencemen (Craig Rivet, Christian Ehrhoff, Sandis Ozolinsh, Matt Carle, Marc-Eduard Vlasic and Kyle McLaren).
This season, the top six point-getters (Boyle, Blake, Ehrhoff, Vlasic, Lukowich and Alexei Semenov) already have 76 scoring points, with 41/2 months to go in the season.
From Michael Farber at Sports Illustrated,
With a quarter of the season and Barry Melrose gone—Barry, we hardly knew ye, at least this go-around—it is time to look at the players who, point for point and dollar for dollar, have had the most profound impact since joining new teams in 2008-09.
1. Dan Boyle, Sharks defenseman, $6.67 million
The Sharks are getting their money’s worth out of a defenseman who signed a six-year deal with Tampa Bay (Melrose’s old team) last February but was traded to the Sharks on July 4. Like the estimable work of Brian Campbell in Chicago—Campbell had a trade-deadline spell with the Sharks last season—Boyle has come in to run the power play, move the puck and make the glut of high-end San Jose forwards better.
On Friday, SJSHARKS.com sat down with Sharks Head Coach Todd McLellan to discuss his thoughts on the team as they hit the 20-game mark of the season.
It was stated in training camp that Joe Thornton was going to have to adjust with the new system and it seems that he has his line rounding into form and that he’s made the adjustment in style.
He’s done everything he’s been asked to do and I feel confident in what he’s doing. He’s backchecking, adjusted on the power play and trying to shoot the puck more. He’s also been a team leader.
Patrick Marleau has reemerged from a tough regular season last year. How proud of Patrick are you for turning it around?
I only know Patty from how I know him now. Stats wise he’s proven he is back. He is a great player and a better person. He’s being rewarded for his play and he’s smiling and enjoying the game.
from David Pollak of Working the Corners,
The Phoenix goalie was Brian Boucher. He volunteered his role in the play when we were talking after this morning’s skate and I brought up Ovechkin’s name in the context of Saturday night’s game.
“What are you going to do? It was a one in a million play? He was on his back and he just whacked at the puck,” Boucher said. “At the time I didn’t realize how unreal the goal was.”
“I couldn’t believe how far I had to keep moving and I still didn’t get,” Boucher said.
more and Boucher will be facing Ovechkin again tonight, this time as a member of the San Jose Sharks.
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