Sharks focused on putting bad start behind them heading into road trip

Sharks focused on putting bad start behind them heading into road trip

The Sharks search for a winning formula is ongoing, to say the least. There is a possibility, however, that getting right back out on the ice is the best medicine.

San Jose has no time to dwell on its back-to-back losses to the Vegas Golden Knights, as the Sharks kick off their first roadie of the season with a Saturday night battle against the Ducks down in Anaheim. For a team clearly dejected after an embarrassing home opener, playing another game just 24 hours later could help right the ship.

"These two games, it's behind us," Tomas Hertl said Friday night after San Jose's dismal 5-1 loss put them in a 0-2-0 hole on the season. "Start from a new page. We have to be ready because Anaheim wants to for sure beat us. So we have to get ready for them."

San Jose's history in back-to-back situations is mixed, with a record of 170-143-26-29 over 368 games throughout the franchise's history. Nevertheless, hopping right back on the ice is one way to reset the Sharks' mental state, which is clearly not in the right place through the first two games of the season.

The best course of action is to push the first two games out of their minds.

"You have to, I think that's the bottom line," coach Peter DeBoer said. "We're integrating some young players in the lineup and the message is: You can't drag this stuff around."

"Starting 0-2 is not acceptable for this group," Erik Karlsson put it bluntly. "I think we work hard, we just don't work smart. And that's something we're going to have to try to figure out here. And the sooner we do it the better because we can't keep going like this."

There's plenty of reason to believe the Sharks can rebound from their poor start. After all, they did it in 2017-18 after beginning that season with consecutive losses.

That being said, the current season offers up a slew of new challenges for San Jose. The Sharks haven't been able to generate much offense at even strength or on the power play so far, and have given up quite a bit on the defensive end in the process. Additionally, San Jose continues to fall behind early in the game.

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Whatever the right formula is for success, the Sharks really do need to find it fast. The season might only be a couple of games old, but letting these losing ways go on for much longer could really hurt them.

"It's still early but we have to start (winning)," Hertl said. "Because if we lose a couple more games, we'll be hunting all season."

Watch Sharks' Tomas Hertl score 2020 NHL All-Star Game-winning goal


Watch Sharks' Tomas Hertl score 2020 NHL All-Star Game-winning goal

Tomas Hertl was pretty quiet for a majority of the NHL All-Star Game Final.

But with 2:36 remaining in the final period, Hertl gave the Pacific Division a 5-4 lead with a breakaway goal.

The Pacific would hang on to beat the Atlantic Division by that same score, taking home the $1 million dollar prize.

The goal was Hertl's only marker of the All-Star Game Final, but his fifth of the night as he scored four in the semifinal game.

Despite Hertl's gaudy numbers and game-winning goal, he didn't take home the All-Star Game MVP. That went to Boston Bruins' David Pastrnak.

Hertl will receive a hero's welcome when he returns to San Jose on Sunday. The Sharks open the second half of the season at home Monday night against the Anaheim Ducks.

Hopefully for the Sharks, Hertl can carry the momentum into the final few months of the season.

Sharks' Tomas Hertl scores four goals in NHL All-Star Game semifinal


Sharks' Tomas Hertl scores four goals in NHL All-Star Game semifinal

It didn't take Sharks center Tomas Hertl long to get on the board in the 2020 NHL All-Star Game on Saturday night.

Midway through the first period of the Western Conference matchup, Hertl gave the Pacific Division a 3-0 lead over the Central Division with a breakaway goal.

Hertl took the outlet pass from Kings center Anze Kopitar and beat Blues goalie Jordan Binnington over his left shoulder.

But Hertl wasn't done. Not by a longshot, as he added three more goals to help the Pacific advance to the All-Star Game Final with a 10-5 win over the Central Division.

Hertl earned his first All-Star appearance as a replacement for captain Logan Couture, who fractured his ankle in early January.

In 46 games for the Sharks this season, Hertl has 15 goals and 20 assists.