Sharks

Couture 'woud love' to beat DeBoer in SAP Center return

Sharks

Logan Couture and the Sharks have plenty to be excited about come Saturday.

Above all, the Sharks finally will make their long-awaited return to SAP Center for their first home game in 11 months. They'll do so against the Vegas Golden Knights, and former Sharks coaches Peter DeBoer and Steve Spott.

Couture, who has spent all 12 of his professional seasons with the Sharks, has plenty of affinity left for his old coaches, and he didn't mince words when asked Friday if it would be weird to see them on the opposing bench.

"Oh yeah," Couture said. "Big time."

Both DeBoer and Spott were members of the Sharks' coaching staff from 2015 through 2019. DeBoer served as the head coach, with Spott as an assistant. In their tenure, San Jose advanced to the playoffs four consecutive times and brought home two conference finals. Most notably, DeBoer guided San Jose to their first-ever Stanley Cup Final appearance in 2016, although the Sharks would lose in six games to the Pittsburgh Penguins. 

However, both DeBoer and Spott were fired in 2019. Five weeks later, DeBoer was hired by the Golden Knights, and Spott was added to the coaching staff a couple weeks after.

A new chapter of the saga will begin Saturday, as DeBoer will face the Sharks in San Jose for the first time.

The Sharks haven't hosted a home game at SAP Center since March 8, 2020, before the COVID-19 pandemic. 

 

Now their homecoming also will have a touch of nostalgia.

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"To see [DeBoer] and Spotter over there is going to be different," Couture said. "Those guys are great people, great hockey coaches. I still keep in touch with both of them quite a bit.

"We had a lot of good times together. It’s tough to cheer for them, obviously with them coaching the nights but those are two guys that you pull for and want them to be successful no matter where they go."

Well, there is one exception to that.

"Just not [Saturday] and not when they play us," Couture said. "We’d love to beat them."

Safe to say, the Sharks will do everything they can to make that happen, and DeBoer and the Knights will do everything possible to spoil the reunion.