Sharks

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Sharks

Sharks captain Logan Couture summarized it best after San Jose's 3-1 loss to the Anaheim Ducks on Saturday night. 

"We've scored three goals in three games," he told reporters at Honda Center. "You're not going to win any games doing that."

Right now, the Sharks don't look good. They've started the season with a 0-3-0 record and been outscored 12-3. The former is their worst start since 1993, and the latter is their worst-ever mark this early. 

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While the first three games of a season aren't likely to make or break a season, they certainly can make you question what a team is made of. 

Even though the Sharks appeared happier with their performance against the Anaheim Ducks than they were with Friday's loss to the Vegas Golden Knights, you have to wonder if the team is one step away from hitting the panic button.

"I think we've just got to realize that there's a lot of opportunity here," defenseman Brenden Dillon said Saturday. "It was frustrating, but I think we've built on the last game. In the first two games, we weren't really happy with our effort. Tonight we had some opportunities but (Ducks goaltender John) Gibson played well. But we're going to have to get better. We have to earn our first win."

 

The lack of goal production is particularly troubling, especially with the Sharks allowing a goal within the first five-and-a-half minutes of each game this season. Even though San Jose looked quicker off the opening faceoff Saturday than the previous two contests, a turnover committed by goaltender Aaron Dell ended up in the back of the Sharks' net just 3:38 into the game.

Coach Peter DeBoer said after the loss that he liked many aspects of Dell's performance, as the netminder made some key saves that kept the Sharks in the game. But with where San Jose stands at the moment, that turnover was far too costly.

"Unfortunately, we don't have a lot of room for errors like that," DeBoer said. "We're barely getting a goal a night."

The Sharks' goal-scoring woes appear to be due to a mix of factors. The team's veterans aren't playing at their usual high level and the players who are new to the lineup are still working out where they fit in. Heck, between Evander Kane's suspension and mounting injuries, the Sharks haven't even played with their expected full lineup yet this season. Then there's the trouble with turnovers, which has interrupted some of San Jose's best scoring chances and resulted in the puck going the other way. 

Yet, even with the turnover troubles in Saturday's game in Anaheim, the Sharks seemed more positive they'll be able to turn things around. The question now is how much trouble they'll allow themselves to get into in the next game before the sirens really start going off.

[RELATED: Ex-Shark Marleau reportedly confident he'll find new team]

As if the start of the season wasn't challenging enough, the road trip continues in Nashville against the Predators on Tuesday. The Preds are built around a two-way defense and have given the Sharks fits in recent seasons. San Jose seems hopeful now that it can grind and turn things around, but that could change pretty quickly if the Sharks fall into another early hole. 

The Sharks haven't gone into full panic mode just yet. Depending on their start Tuesday, though, that could change.