Kukla's Korner

Petshark: Talking Stick

New lines, old lines, Sharks play tonight

Tonight’s lineup features Vlasic’s return but no Burns, the second line on top (minus Havlat, plus Ferriero) and a new mix of lower lines: McCarthy-Desjardins-Wingels, Mashinter-Guite-MacIntyre.  Oh, and the McGinn-Handzus-Mitchell line which isn’t at all new. 

Nemo was back on the ice for practice.  Praise the hockey gods.  Petrecki is also ready to play, after quietly finishing hip rehab.  I wondered where he was disappearing to during scrimmages.  He will be with Vlasic, Braun with Vandermeer and White with Demers.  I keep seeing White listed as “C White” instead of just “White.”  I know we had another White last season but let it go already, Colin is our new White, I think it is safe to just say “White.”

One of the things I try to do with hockey tickets when I have more than one is take someone with me who has never been to a hockey game or hasn’t been since she went a long time ago, expecting something like she saw in Sweden as a girl, only to be scared off by the Seals.  I’m still working on that friend, actually.  I am determined to show her the new improved NHL, the kind of hockey that won’t make her run for the exit wanting to vomit.  She was never squeamish, she’s a nurse.  Seals-era NHL just rubbed her the wrong way. 

So tonight I’m taking my brother, his wife and a friend to the preseason game against the Yotes.  I figure they won’t miss the top liners, not having any idea who they are.  I just want them to get a sense of the show.  I have the tickets because a kind fellow fan gave them to me.  I think the best use I can put them to is the making of new fans out of old friends.  Sure, it’s a little bit self-serving but I know the Sharks put on a good show so we all win, right?

I’m dithering over whether to wear a jersey or not.  I don’t want to make my companions feel uncomfortable in the presence of fanaticism.  But I do feel like I should wear one of the jerseys, I did buy them and all that. Maybe this is what the black pajamas are for: muted fanaticism.  I cannot decide, I have so many teal tops. I put that decision aside to check Twitter.

Six more players were cut from training camp, and are off to Worcester: Connolly, Doherty, Irwin, Viedensky, Livingston and Reid.  This made me go to capgeek to see if I could figure out, of the players remaining, who has had his express Worcester shuttle ticket punched for the last time.  It looks like only Mashinter and Moore, but I could be entering the wrong dates in the system, and I didn’t check everyone.

Of Greiss, McLellan said today:

“He has looked sharp,” McLellan said. “That has to be a confidence builder for him. He has to feel good about the way the team played in front of him.

“I still believe that teams play for a goalie or with a goalie,” the coach continued. “We’ve played for a goalie the last couple nights. We’ve been really good defensively.” -Working the Corners

I’ve heard McLellan use that line before, the for/with distinction, but I’m not comfortable with it.  It sounds too much like the team is protecting the goalie, like he needs extra protecting.  Of course their job is to avoid making the goalie carry them, but I don’t like the idea of them carrying him either.  We’ve seen them do that.  I didn’t see the game last night but it sounded like utter and complete domination of the opponent, and very little work for Greiss.  I don’t know how much of a threat that opponent posed, but if that was playing “for” a goalie, I don’t like it.  Yes, great, dominate the opponent whenever possible, but it still sounds like a situation where the team is compensating for a weak link.

I like the playing “with” concept better.  You know, where everyone does his job, together.  I’d like to have another veteran goalie hanging around, but such decisions are not my job. 

My job tonight, as I see it, is to get people into the tank, and see that they have a good time.  Maybe, just maybe, they will start to see what I see in this sport. 


Filed in: , San Jose Sharks, | Petshark: Talking Stick | Permalink
  Tags: brodie+reid, colin+white, james+livingston, marc-edouard+vlasic, marek+viedensky, matt+irwin, mike+connolly, nick+petrecki, pre-season, taylor+doherty, thomas+greiss


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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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