Kukla's Korner

Petshark: Talking Stick

Entries with the tag: tommy wingels

It looks like the Ducks, it sounds like the Pond…

I'd really have to see them walk to be sure.  These don't seem like the Ducks we all knew, didn't like, and that the Sharks could usually beat back in the day.   Last season was one thing.  The Ducks beating the Sharks so often seemed like one of many very strange happenings in a very bad season.  But this season?  What do the Ducks know that the Sharks don't?

The Ducks blocked 24 shots to the Sharks 15. Maybe this game was about slowing the future Ducks down since they obviously have San Jose's number.  Hitting them with a lot of shots is one way to do that.  Another stat that was kind of interesting was that the Ducks out-hit the Sharks 23-19, and out-shot them 32-26.  Doesn't the team without the puck usually hit the most?  So the Sharks had the puck, and didn't shoot it?   I guess if you count the blocked shots in there it isn't so bad.

Couture scored the only Sharks goal.  That wasn't so unusual, but to have the assists go to Andrew Desjardins from fourth line, and Tommy Wingels from the third, that was kind of cool and unlikely.  I guess that's what happens to the lines when Clowe gets sent away for nearly a third of the game.

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Filed in: hockey, , San Jose Sharks, | Petshark: Talking Stick | Permalink
  Tags: anaheim+ducks, andrew+desjardins, douglas+murray, jason+demers, logan+couture, martin+havlat, michal+handzus, penalty+kill, ryane+clowe, tommy+wingels

Broad strokes: Sharks overseas

Over the past few days, I discovered an impatience I haven't felt for a while, the "hold on, no games today?  Or tomorrow?  Or... I'm supposed to wait how long for a game?" feeling.  It was irritating, but not bad.  It reminded me of a normal hockey season.  It feels like being all adapted to the new hockey universe.

This impatience drove me to start hunting for European and KHL games online.  This is not only difficult because feeds tend to move around, but also because an audio feed will not do. I don't speak most of the languages these games are broadcast in.   I did manage to dig up a Dinamo Minsk game going on yesterday morning.  A video feed was not available to me (which only took me about an hour to figure out) but following the scoreboard was better than nothing. So that was fun, except that Minsk blew a lead and fell 6-3.  At least Pavelski got a goal.

There are several Sharks abroad.   I found the following information online, but I can't be sure how complete it is.  I started with Eurohockey.com because they have an easy search that found most of the Sharks quickly.  From there I sort of wandered:

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Filed in: hockey, , San Jose Sharks, | Petshark: Talking Stick | Permalink
  Tags: antti+niemi, bundesliga, del, douglas+murray, jason+demers, joe+pavelski, joe+thornton, justin+braun, khl, logan+couture, michal+handzus, nla, sm-liiga, t.j.+galiardi, thomas+greiss, tommy+wingels

Enough lockout non-news

There's a theory that refusing to give voice to your dark thoughts is more productive than letting rants run riot.  I'm going to try that.  The NHL CBA negotiations are going nowhere, both sides look kind of stupid, childish and not the least concerned with whether or not we see any NHL hockey this season.  That wasn't a rant, just a brief statement of fact.  A more comprehensive discussion of the situation can be found here from Elliotte Friedman.

Here are some bits of info I've picked up about players and teams that matter in my hockey universe: Back on September 29th, Logan Couture's team beat Joe Thornton's now Rick Nashless team in Switzerland:

@Logancouture: Big win for @OfficialGSHC. Also bragging rights over the big guy!

Jason Demers is getting rave (or maybe just good) reviews in Finland.  Really it's hard to get the details via Google Translate and I won't apologize for not speaking Finnish.  I hear it is a very difficult language.

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Filed in: hockey, , San Jose Sharks, | Petshark: Talking Stick | Permalink
  Tags: jason+demers, joe+thornton, logan+couture, nhl+cba, patrick+marleau, ryane+clowe, sf+bulls, srjc+polar+bears, tommy+wingels

Off the radar: Sharks are very quiet

Help us, Doug Wilson.  Sharks fans need some relief, something to distract the gossip gremlins as they scamper unchecked through our village.  Matters are getting desperate.  David Pollak felt obliged to address a Joe Thornton trade rumor, and I found myself watching a tape-delayed bicycle race the other day.  Desperate I say.

Unfounded Boyle trade rumors caused speculation and some scoffs.  The Thornton trade rumor caused a moment of laughter.  Shane Doan could… no won’t .. wait.. will… probably not come to San Jose.  Not sure Sharks fans care much about that, maybe no one ever believed he would join the team.  Now the gremlins are spitting dating rumors on the storefronts.  Do something, Mr. Wilson.  Put up a plaque at The Tank and have an unveiling ceremony.  Something.

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Filed in: , San Jose Sharks, | Petshark: Talking Stick | Permalink
  Tags: doug+wilson, douglas+murray, gossip, gremlins, michal+handzus, rumor, shane+doan, silence, tommy+wingels

Who’s on third?

As praise for the Kings is heaped onto the web, one of the explanations that keeps being presented is the acquisition of Jeff Carter. I agree, if he and Richards are such great buddies, playing together can’t hurt. Happy players play better.

Oh, they don’t mean that? They mean Carter made the top six so much better?  Oh.  Here I was getting used to the happy notion that teams know they need more than two lines to really do the job.  I guess we’re back to only needing a top six.  Please tell me GMs aren’t really thinking that way anymore.  Please tell me it’s just confused people trying to make sense of the LA Kings suddenly getting their act together.

Sigh.

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Filed in: , San Jose Sharks, | Petshark: Talking Stick | Permalink
  Tags: doug+wilson, jamie+mcginn, kevin+kurz, la+kings, scoring+depth, tommy+wingels

Elimination Day, April 21, 2012

This is going to be long.  It is, after all, the end of the Sharks’ 2012 playoff run. 

Hands shaking. Why? I’m not even watching the game live.  This has all happened before, it has literally happened already, I am watching on delay because I am that paranoid.  Still with the hands shaking.

Before the game, Boyle said that no one outside the room believed they could do it.  That was a dagger. 

Why is a win so important to me?  I won’t lose pay if the Sharks don’t come back to play another day.  Hell, I might get more paid work done if this is over.

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  Tags: brent+burns, elimination, experience, fan, joe+thornton, justin+braun, playoffs, st.+louis+blues, tommy+wingels

Glint

“Don’t write the obituary just yet,” tweeted David Pollak last night.  Put that big syringe with the scary blue stuff in it down.  Give the Sharks’ playoff hopes a few hours, they might be stabilizing. 

Just before the Sharks beat the Bruins, Minnesota won too, with Devin Setoguchi’s help:

Michael Russo ‏ @Russostrib: “Since Setoguchi fell March 1 in Montreal in the shootout, he’s gone 2 for 2 on shootouts, 1 for 1 on a penalty shot. Impressive #mnwild”

If that isn’t Shark behavior in a nutshell, I don’t know what is.  Good for you, Seto.  I would take a low-light reel embarrassing fall down in a shootout over the full season fall down the Sharks have demonstrated any day.

Maybe.

The story of the prodigal son cruelly illustrates how doing good and right all the time doesn’t necessarily make you a favorite.  People are so excited to see the drifters or the missing come back, they forget all about the diligent, hard-working, loyal ones who never left.  Oh well.  Life’s a bitch and then you die.

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Filed in: , San Jose Sharks, | Petshark: Talking Stick | Permalink
  Tags: bully, joe+thornton, tommy+wingels, you+can+play

Anaheim @ San Jose, morning skate

It was 1977 on KFOG’s Ten at Ten. That was more exciting in theory than reality for me, because I had guessed the year from the clues.  Those clues were a very young Carrie Fisher saying: “Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi,” followed by a clip of “Three is Company too…”  The songs that started the set didn’t really resonate with me.

It’s bright and clear in the Bay Area but darn it was cold this morning.  Of course I forgot to pack gloves.  Of course.

All the Sharks but Galiardi were on the ice this morning.  For the second game day in a row I saw Couture, Vlasic & Braun stay out a little late with White and Vandermeer,  tipping shots in front of Niemi. They didn’t stay as long as the scratches but they were out longer than everyone else who expects to play.

Good thing to do, giving your goalie a little extra attention like that.

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  Tags: antti+niemi, jonas+hiller, michal+handzus, tommy+wingels, toni+lydman

Win for the road

In just over an hour, the Sharks will hit the ice for their first of nine road games.  That’s a long road trip, even for a team used to a lot of travel.  McLellan says he doesn’t put much stock in the theory of road trip bonding, but he does see the benefits of getting away from the distractions of home life:

“Some of the players will get more rest on the road,” McLellan said, “maybe get an afternoon nap when the little ones aren’t jumping on you. The family activities obviously don’t exist on the road, so there is a chance to get a little more rest for some of them.” -Mercury News

That’s why people go on vacation or work retreats, to get away, be in the moment instead of the past and future and all the things other people need from them.  Maybe I need to get away again, my brain is flying in six different directions right now, only a few of which have anything to do with hockey.  At least a few of them do.

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  Tags: chicago+blackhawks, jason+demers, jim+vandermeer, road+trip, st+louis+blues, tommy+wingels

Get a little crazy

Marleau, Pavelski and Niemi are the first on the ice.  Marleau sprinkles pucks around one end of the rink, gives the bag to Niemi, who takes it to the other end.  Pavelski and Marleau start shooting, others come out on the ice.

McGinn begins doing goalie drills with Niemi, while others do shooting and tipping drills.

I check Twitter.  When I look up, Marleau and Pavelski have left.  It’s an optional skate I guess.

Boyle is there, smiling.

Clowe is there too, visorless. I think he looks sheepish without it but I must be projecting, imagining he knows he should wear one.  I’m sure he doesn’t think so.  I hope his head is as hard as it seems.  Sigh.

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  Tags: chicago+blackhawks, crazy, goalies, grit, james+sheppard, ray+emery, tommy+wingels

Sources say… trade!

So many rumors, so little time, mere weeks before the NHL trade deadline.  When I see the phrase “sources say…” I always hear “survey says…!” in my head, the way they used to say it on Family Feud.  Perhaps I only hear it that way when I’m on cold meds.  Meds or no, something tells me that what most sources say is less reliable than game show surveys.  Bruce Garrioch mentions the Sharks in two different scenarios in a single rumor pack, beginning with Ryan Smyth:

If Smyth does decide to waive his no-movement clause, there won’t be any tears shed. The 35-year-old could easily go to a contender as a pure rental, take the chance to win the Stanley Cup and then return to the Oilers.  -Ottawa Sun

Then there’s Teemu Selanne.  Garrioch says San Jose is one of many waiting for him to decide to waive his NMC:

The Sharks would be an attractive option because of San Jose’s proximity to his family in Anaheim. -ibid

Those are fun. I especially like the part about Smyth being able to go back to the Oilers later since he likes it there so much.  That’s sweet.

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  Tags: andrew+murray, benn+ferriero, john++mccarthy, rumors, tommy+wingels

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.

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  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

Sharks recall McCarthy, send others to Worcester

Niittymaki’s back in Worcester for conditioning.  McLaren’s on waivers, probably going to the Woo. Wingels joins Clowe on the injured list.  What does it all mean?

Nitty: maybe when he played in that first conditioning stint, he discovered he wasn’t 100% yet?  Maybe now he is?  Or… what, the Sharks wanted him elsewhere when the Tampa Bay scouts came to town?  Why?  They weren’t going to see him anyway, and they’ve seen him before.  Seems most likely a function of reconditioning, plain and simple.  No reason to “showcase” him in the AHL.

McLaren: maybe the team thought he did pretty well game before last, so he was back against the Sens.  I guess they rethought that after seeing him against the Sens.  I don’t know, didn’t seem like he did anything too dreadful.  He took a penalty, who didn’t?  I think he spent less time in the box than Pavs did.  I think anything sub-par from him would hardly stand out in the mess that was that game.

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  Tags: antero+niittymaki, frazer+mclaren, john+mccarthy, tommy+wingels, worcester+sharks

Caution: sometimes the Blue Jackets don’t lose

After sleeping on it and reading Sharks game recaps, I realized that there were a lot of good things about last night’s game against the Ducks.  Things like allowing no shots on goal during penalty kills.  Things like out shooting and out scoring the other guys, blocking a lot of shots.  Burns coming back after blocking a shot with his hand, and, apparently, Demers feeling okay.  These are all very good as karmic signs go, no matter who the other guys are. 

Like the Blue Jackets.  They’re sharing a nest at the bottom of the standings with the Ducks.  Unlike the Ducks, they haven’t had a single good spell this season.  They started out losing and injured, they are still losing.  Maybe I’m being generous when I say the Ducks had a good spell.  They won four in a row at the start of the season and since then have only won six more.  The Blue Jackets, however,only won their first game after losing their first eight.  It was a race to get a win in before November.

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  Tags: columbus+blue+jackets, rick+nash, thomas+greiss, tommy+wingels

Turn, turn, turn: time to win one

Turn the page.  Turn it around.  Turn up the volume.  Okay, not sure how that last one works but I think it is time for the Sharks to take a turn for the better.  Yes yes, they did win one already but that was ages ago.  We’re ready for another.

The odds of losing three in a row are not a lot better than the odds of winning three in a row.  I guess you could say three’s a charm.  The Ducks already won three in a row, has to be harder to win four, right?

The odds of the Sharks starting two seasons in a row by winning one and losing three in a row have to be very long.

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, andrew+desjardins, andrew+murray, antti+niemi, jamie+mcginn, martin+havlat, silly+prediction+methods, tommy+wingels, torrey+mitchell

Hurry up and wait

The Sharks wanted to start the season off fast.  That sounds like a good plan, even if the NHL schedule made us hurry up and wait for a week before the next game.  I also wish these starts were not against the Yotes and the Ducks. The Ducks should offer some resistance but the current incarnation of the Phoenix Coyotes is hardly rigorous competition for what some are calling the best Sharks team ever, or in a very long time.  That’s why a blowout was sort of on the agenda Saturday night, especially after that preseason game I can’t seem to remember.

Everything was going according to plan until the end.  I imagine it’s hard to keep playing hard when there’s not much push back.  The Sharks won 6-3, but for quite a while the score was lots more lopsided than that. There are several good recaps of the game: 

Fear the Fin
Mercury News
Working the Corners

If you haven’t already, go read those.  I did.

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  Tags: jamie+mcginn, phoenix+coyotes, practice, thomas+greiss, tommy+wingels

Sharks hockey starts tomorrow, and so does Greiss

Welcome back NHL hockey.  Yesterday’s practice gave me some what ifs to ponder.  What if the Sharks had to manage a penalty kill and, for whatever reason, the only forwards on the ice were McGinn & McLaren?  What if the team was down two men, and the only forward was Andrew Murray?  Apparently, in these situations, the team could make due with White and Vandermeer there too. Something tells me that exercise was more about who was on the power play than the penalty kill but it still made me wonder. 

Tomorrow the Sharks play their first game of the season, and there are several things I’m looking forward to, not the least of which is being there to hear the noise.

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  Tags: andrew+murray, antti+niemi, jamie+mcginn, jim+vandermeer, martin+havlat, thomas+greiss, tommy+wingels

Questions and a few answers

For those going to the game Saturday, the Sharks will host their annual opening night street rally from 5 to 7, next to HP Pavilion.  There will be food, music, carnival festivities (face painting, dunk tank, slap shot hockey, other fun stuff), and a scavenger hunt.  For more on the scavenger hunt and a chance to win game tickets, go to: www.sjsharks.com/streetrally.

They’ll have a benefit beer booth and Sharks gear to tempt you.  Even if you aren’t going to the game but are in the area, check that out.  It’s all subject to change in case of inclement weather, fingers crossed.

Mike Moore and Cameron MacIntyre reported to Worcester today.  Evidently MacIntyre got there last night, and was promptly interviewed.  Thanks to @worcestersharks for posting the vid.

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  Tags: antti+niemi, cameron+macintyre, frazer+mclaren, jamie+mcginn, martin+havlat, sharks+street+fair, tommy+wingels

Sharks roster taking shape?  All set?

Just because it seems like the thing to do these days, I’ll share my lineup guesses.  Today could be the last chance to do that since tonight is the last exhibition game.  Announcement of the final decisions are imminent, though there aren’t a lot of decisions left to make.

Marleau-Thornton-Pavelski, Clowe-Couture-Havlat, Wingels-Handzus-Mitchell, McGinn-Desjardins-A Murray, Ferriero, McCarthy.
Boyle-Murray, Burns-Vlasic, Demers-White, Vandermeer.
Niemi, Greiss.

There, that’s what I guess the Sharks roster will look like come October.  Why?  The top six are self-evident (F and D), even if they get moved around a bit.  The goalies?  It sounds like Niemi will be just fine by the start of the season.  If not, no biggie.  He’ll be back and Greiss seems to be finding his groove.

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  Tags: andrew+murray, benn+ferriero, brad+winchester, frazer+mclaren, jamie+mcginn, jim+vandermeer, john+mccarthy, justin+braun, tommy+wingels

Niemi, Stalock on the ice, Wingels on 3rd, who’s on 4th?

When you know someone has been hurt, you watch them differently than you would watch someone you assume to be healthy.  Any little misstep will be cause for doubt.  Considering the gravity of the injury sustained by Alex Stalock last season, I think it’s nothing short of a miracle that I only noticed one misstep this morning.  He wore lower pads only. I’m no expert and I don’t know how his leg feels but it looked like both legs were doing what he told them to. Between exercises, he tossed the puck around, hitting the wall, and shooting at both nets.  Part of me thought “Dude! Don’t even play around with putting the puck in your own net!” But having fun is good for healing, so he should do whatever amuses him for now.

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  Tags: alex+stalock, antti+niemi, ben+guite, justin+braun, matt+pelech, sean+sullivan, tommy+wingels

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