Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 04/02/12 at 11:09 AM ET
from David Pollak of the Mercury News,
Make the playoffs and this team still gets to show what it can do when it matters most against the best. Miss the playoffs and every element of the hockey department—from the front office to the coaching staff to the players—could go under the microscope of an ownership group looking for flaws.
“Six points that are out there are real important,” coach Todd McLellan said in a classic understatement as he shifted the focus from San Jose’s just completed 3-0 victory over the Dallas Stars on Saturday night to what lies ahead.
What lies ahead is a rematch with the Stars in Dallas on Tuesday and a home-and-home series with the Los Angeles Kings beginning Thursday night at the Staples Center and ending Saturday night at HP Pavilion.
Those two teams, as well as the Phoenix Coyotes and Colorado Avalanche, are competing with the Sharks for the final three playoff spots in the Western Conference. In addition, each of those teams except Colorado remains in the race for the Pacific Division title and the No. 3 playoff seed that comes with it.
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