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Petshark: Talking Stick

Welcome to the Year of the Dragon

Luck and legend distinguish the Dragon from the other symbols in the Chinese and Mongolian zodiac.  It is said to be the very luckiest birth year, the sign of the emperor.  Unlike the other symbols, a dragon is not the sort of critter most of us will see in our lifetimes.  Since there are twelve signs in this system, that is a little surprising.  The year starts today and ends around this time in 2013.

As someone who grew up in San Francisco, I guess I should say something about the Niners.  They lost.  Bummer for Niners fans.  I wasn’t all that anxious for them to win because I feel that trips to championship finals disperse geographically in such a way that if the Niners had gone on, this would have been bad news for the Sharks.  Look what happened with the Giants- the other Giants I mean.  Condolences to Niners fans, may the loss not be in vain.

The Sharks begin the year in Edmonton.  I don’t know if any of them attended a parade, but a big spectacle like an NHL game should do.  Wow… that would be cool, if someone brought a paper and silk dragon to the game and sent it around the stands… I know, that probably won’t happen.

Anyway, the Oilers are struggling, they’re all banged up and probably can’t quite remember how it felt back when things were rosy.  Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (Year of the Rooster) suffered terrible luck in the Year of the Rabbit, he’ll have to wait a bit for the Dragon to help him out.  Jordan Eberle (Year of the Horse) can look forward to better luck starting now, and is encouraged to “get a little carried away this year.”  Huh.  The Sharks should keep an eye on that one.  Taylor Hall (Year of the Ram) can expect help from the Dragon to stay healthy.  He could use some of that.  That Rabbit really got him good on its way out.  Come to think of it, last year was not good to him at all, health-wise.

As for Ales Hemsky (Year of the Pig):

“Chung believes this year will be a little fast-paced for the Pig but advises him to take initiative to stay in the game. “The Dragon will shake things up for the Pig in his relationships,” says Chung, “but this may not be a bad thing.” -Egypt Independent (think globally, quote locally)

So those trade rumors may be true?  Either way, sounds like Hemsky is still a step behind.

Sharks fans fret, with good reason, that the Sharks tend to play down to the competition’s level.  The Year of the Dragon has no patience with this, neither should we.  Now is the time for the strong to prevail.  If you don’t win now, you don’t have it in you to do so, or so the legend goes.

A couple of years ago we had the Year of the Tiger, a time when things are expected to go topsy-turvy.  In the Year of the Tiger, the now-or-never Blackhawks and the injury-plagued-goalie-juggling-coach-swapping Flyers could end up facing each other in the Stanley Cup Finals.  That was fun, but the Dragon promises no such craziness.  Nope, the Dragon is all about good fortune, with a little survival of the fittest thrown in.  It is a time for high risk and high rewards.

Good news for the Sharks: this is a water year.  That’s not only good because sharks live in water, but there are also a lot of water signs (Cancer, Pisces, Scorpio) on the Sharks roster.  That should make them happy, no matter what year they were born in.

I was curious about this prediction for people born in the Year of the Ram:

“The Ram will make good money this year,” explains Chung, “but only if he uses foresight and common sense.” The Ram is also encouraged to engage in water sports. -ibid

If you read up a little on Chinese horoscopes, they tend to mention money a lot.  Money seems to be equated with luck and power- imagine that.  I wonder if hockey qualifies as a water sport?

There are some influential Sharks born in the Year of the Ram: Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau and Todd McLellan.  People born in the Year of the Ram (or Sheep or Goat, depending on which site you visit) have four good months this year.  I think that’s enough to get the job done, right?  I saw a few warnings that Rams should be careful not to be led astray in the Year of the Dragon.  I guess this means they should pick their Dragons carefully.

People born in the Year of the Ram (or Sheep, or Goat- really it is strange how different sources cannot agree on this. Horses are always Horses, Dogs always Dogs, Monkeys always Monkeys, etc, but Ram/Sheep/Goat get switched all the time) are not the only ones who follow Dragons.  That must be the emperor thing.  Everyone feels compelled to follow Dragons, except possibly other Dragons in line to be emperor.  Dragons are charismatic, passionate, persuasive and all around awesome.  Dragons heal fast, recover from injuries you don’t expect them to, pucks bounce in their direction. Okay, I made that last part up. 

You may have already known or guessed that Dan Boyle is a Dragon.  So are Jamie McGinn, Jason Demers, Tommy Wingels and James Sheppard.  I guess the year will demand great things of them all if they don’t get over-ambitious.  Earth Dragons (that quartet of junior Dragons) are slated to do very well this year.  I also saw some nonsense about how fire Dragons should be careful in a water year.  I’m going to ignore that on behalf of Boyle fans everywhere.

Who are the Oilers’ Dragons? Ryan Smyth and Taylor Fedun.  I think it’s safe to say the Sharks’ Dragons are not only more numerous but also more formidable than theirs.

Couture was born in the Year of the Snake.  Evidently last year was pretty good for Snakes, but this year should be even better.  Excellent!

Greiss starts tonight.  He was born in the Year of the Tiger.  Basically, they do what they want and in a water year it tends to work out for them.  So he’s a good choice to start the year off.

Demers is also expected to play.  Obviously McLellan checked his charts and decided to go Dragon-heavy.  Glad to hear it.

Light ‘em up, Sharks!

Filed in: , San Jose Sharks, | Petshark: Talking Stick | Permalink
  Tags: dan+boyle, james+sheppard, jamie+mcginn, jason+demers, joe+thornton, logan+couture, patrick+marleau, thomas+greiss, todd+mclellan, tommy+wingels, year+of+the+dragon


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About Petshark: Talking Stick

Native of Northern California.  Hockey fan since 1998... sort of... there's a hiatus in there that I still can't explain.

I want to know about anything and everything related to the sport and the spectacle.  I watch, I react, I write it down.

My interest in the Sharks was initially a matter of geographic convenience and regional loyalty because that seemed to be how it worked.  I had no prior interest (at all-- AT ALL) in professional sports of any kind.  When I met hockey, it might have set off a chain reaction of general sports fandom.  It hasn't, I don't think it will.  At all.

Since then, that interest developed into full blown (mostly sort of usually almost completely) exclusive loyalty to the Sharks.

I started blogging a couple years ago on wordpress. I still occasionally put things there that I don't think fit here because they are not about the Sharks. Wherever my words wander, here on Kuklas Korner, they will (usually) hang on to a teal thread.

I can be found in cyberspace on Twitter @petshark47, or emailed at talkingstick@petshark.net

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