Sharks

Brodie's anwers to your lockout questions

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Brodie's anwers to your lockout questions

1. How long will the lockout last?Gut instinct says somewhere near, but not long before American Thanksgiving. Both sides have a lot of dollars and momentumat stake once the calendar hits December between nationally televised games, HBOs 247 buildup, and the Winter Classic itself. Clearly,the combination of those elements add significant extra pressure to negotiations.

RELATED: Locked out -- NHL enters labor stoppage
2. Is it possible the lockout will sacrifice an entire season?Unfortunately I have to say yes, it is a possibility. Doing the math, if we dont get a resolution in principle by December 15th, Im not sure how ameaningful schedule could be logistically laid out or played out. Im looking at that mid-December date (or somewhere around it) as the breaking point for a hockey season. 3. If a resolution is reached, how quickly could the season begin?After talking with players and coaches, the best estimate is 2 weeks. This would be the barest of bare minimums. Its hardlyenough time to get a decent training camp plus say, 2 exhibition games. However I think all teams, under the same disadvantage,could launch after at least 14 official days together. 4. All those Sharks headed overseas... how fast can they come back?Instantly. The Sharks lead the NHL in players headed to EuropeRussia... and those guys all have immediate "outs" in their contracts. Essentially Joe Thornton, Logan Couture and friends... could all be on the next flight back to California. Foreign teams understand they are truly borrowing NHL players.
RELATED: Sharks headed overseas -- Murray Couture Thornton
5. Are players headed overseas just to make money?Absolutely not. In fact, between paying hefty foreign taxes, and funding their own insurance policies... players are likely to pay a large portion of the earnings they make. Players are doing this primarily to keep their routines in order, their skills sharp, and their competitive edge intact. Although I know some of the Sharks will enjoy their overseas life experience, their travels are hardly vacation-status.6. What would a condensed season look like?It will be ugly. It will be difficult on the players. Look at what the NBA did last season, slamming in 66 games across a matter of 4 months.Often, teams played 3 nights in a row. No offense to the association but Im not sure how hockey bodies would fare in thatextent given their greater physical exertion. Possibilities to ease the workload could include expanding rosters, or even increasing the amount of players that can dress on a given night. Regardless, I'm of the opinion a shortened season should contain no less than 50 games. In 1994-95, the schedule was cut to 48, but I think with anything fewer, the integrity of resultsplayoffs begin to be compromised and questioned.7. When would the regular season schedule get tossed?We already know that the first 3 preseason games for San Jose have been cancelled. It's my best guess that somewhere betweenthe 27th and the 29th, the regular season schedule has to be voided. Going back to that 2 week minimum-camp theory,it's easy to look at the NHL's scheduled "Opening Night" of October 11th, and do the math backwards.RELATED: Sharks owners release letter to fans concerning lockout
8. What again... is the main sticking point with negotiations?Money, of course. The NHL has grown to a 3.3 billion dollar per year business. However while some teams are thriving financially, others are hurting dearly. It's between the players and owners to divvy up that hypothetical pot of "Hockey Related Revenue" and keep everyone afloat. Conflicting numbers and percentages have been thrown back and forth, but the general assumption is that the gap in negotiations is currently between 500 million and 1 billion. 9. What can the optimistic fan do, in the mean time?Stay hopeful, updated, and most importantly: civil. The one thing players and owners agree on, is that the fan is losing out greatly for every missed NHL game. My suggestion... find classy, thoughtful, and impactful ways to make your voice heard. The situation can not be controlled, but your actions can. Support the inaugural season of the San Francisco Bulls (Sharks new ECHL affiliate). Support the San Jose State men's hockey team. And if you're in the greater Eastern Seaboard... support the Worcester Sharks (San Jose's AHL affiliate). If you truly love the game, don't let the disgruntled fanbase take a step backwards.RELATED: NHL deputy commissioner Daly says revenue split doesn't work
10. What will you do until there's a season?Thanks for asking! I am employed full-time by Comcast SportsNet and fortunately this lockout does not affect that one bit. Although it won't be my preferred assignment of covering the Sharks, they will inevitably keep me very busy reporting on stories or hosting studio shows. I will clearly miss working with Randy, Drew, Bakes, Heddy, Curtis, and Males... but do know that whenever the NHL is back, CSN will be ready, with bold plans for hockey season.

Process there even if results aren't for Sharks early in new season

Process there even if results aren't for Sharks early in new season

Saturday’s loss to the New York Islanders is one with which Sharks fans have become all too familiar.

The Sharks held a decided 41-23 edge on the shot count, but trailed 3-1 on the scoreboard. Since 2005, no team in the league has lost more games (59) in which they shot 35 or more times, and held their opponent to 25 or fewer shots.

No, your instincts haven’t deceived you over the Joe Thornton era: San Jose has lost a lot of games where they’ve otherwise outplayed their opponent. Of course, they’ve won plenty of those games too. More often than not, in fact, winning 72 of 131 times under those circumstances.

Frustration under those circumstances became readily apparent in the second period on Saturday, when Joe Pavelski broke his stick over Thomas Greiss’ net. The captain had plenty of reason to be unhappy, as his goalless drought to start the season has mirrored his team’s inability to finish at even strength.

So far this season, only Dallas and Montreal have scored on a lower percentage of their shots at even strength than San Jose, according to Natural Stat Trick. Both the Stars and Canadiens, unsurprisingly, are seventh in their respective divisions. The Sharks are sixth in the Pacific, thanks only to the still-winless Coyotes.

This early in the season, bad results can mask a strong process. They can’t finish, but the Sharks have been, statistically, one of the league’s best puck possession teams at even strength. That can happen over such a short stretch, but that’s easy to lose sight of when the team’s sitting in the division’s basement.

Right now, the Sharks just aren’t scoring enough at even strength, even as they’re playing well elsewhere. The power play’s begun to find an identity, particularly on the Kevin Labanc-led second unit. The penalty kill hasn’t allowed a goal since allowing three in the season opener, and have climbed all the way to 13th in the league.

If the Sharks continue to play this way, the goals, and wins, should come. They may not, of course, especially if Peter DeBoer struggles to find combinations that click for more than a game at a time. But eventually, the results should align with the process.

Saturday night was “one of those games” that have been surprisingly common in recent Sharks history, but it shouldn’t be chalked up as anything more than an amusing anomaly. Sometimes, one team is better, and still finds a way to lose.  

Sometimes, it truly is that simple.

Greiss strong in net as Islanders hand loss to Sharks

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USATSI

Greiss strong in net as Islanders hand loss to Sharks

BOX SCORE

SAN JOSE -- Thomas Greiss guided the New York Islanders on a night when they played it a little bit too safe.

Greiss stopped 40 shots, Brock Nelson scored a tiebreaking goal in the second period and the New York Islanders rallied to beat the slumping San Jose Sharks 3-1 on Saturday.

The Islanders improved to 1-1 on their three-game, five-day West Coast trip. The Sharks are 1-3 on their season-opening five-game homestand.

Nelson made it 2-1 at 13:33 of the second period, capitalizing on an open look in front of the goal after Joshua Ho-Sang's pass from behind the net.

"After we got the lead we just kind of held on, we bent but we didn't break and we needed some big saves from Thomas," Islanders coach Doug Weight said.

"These teams, when they're down, they're gonna push. ... You don't want to sit back but I think it's human nature. We have to get it out of our heads. We want to play aggressive and we want to put the puck in good spots. We started making some shoddy decisions, our feet stopped moving for a while, but give (the Sharks) credit, they made a good push. Tommy was great."

The Sharks led after Kevin Labanc's power-play goal at 4:16 of the first. Labanc was in the left circle when he rebounded a deflection and fired a wrist shot that slipped through Greiss' pads.

The Islanders tied it when Anders Lee tipped one in at 17:02 of the first.

Cal Clutterbuck scored an empty-net goal at with 1:10 left in the game.

"It's nice, first road win of the year, a good bounce back," Nelson said, referencing a 3-2 loss to the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday.

"I thought we did some good things in Anaheim and weren't rewarded. It's nice to come out on top here."

The Islanders failed to score on three power plays. The Sharks penalty killing unit hasn't allowed a power-play goal in 12 chances over its last three games.

The Sharks had a short-handed scoring chance after Joakim Ryan was called for holding at 14:33 in the third period, when Greiss turned away Chris Tierney's shot in front of the goal.

Greiss survived relentless pressure in a third period in which the Sharks had 15 shots on goal.

"It felt like it was going to break, it just never did," Sharks center Joe Pavelski said. "A little bit of credit to Greisser over there, but with us, we've got to keep pushing and find a way.

"I thought we were going to tie it, but encouraging to see the way guys played for a second straight game here. Wanted a better result, for sure, but guys played hard."

NOTES: Islanders C Alan Quine (wrist) is with the team on its West Coast trip and has been practicing. He'll likely go to Bridgeport of the AHL on a conditioning assignment if he's ready when the team returns home on Monday. ... RW Clutterbuck (hip) was in Saturday's lineup after missing the last three games and C Jordan Eberle was on the ice a day after missing Friday's practice with an injury he suffered in practice the previous day. ... Sharks D Paul Martin missed a second straight game with a lower body injury. Coach Pete DeBoer said the injury is day-to-day.

UP NEXT

Islanders: At the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday night.

Sharks: Host the Montreal Canadians on Tuesday night.