Sharks

Sharks takeaways: What we learned in series-ending 5-1 Game 6 loss to Blues

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AP

Sharks takeaways: What we learned in series-ending 5-1 Game 6 loss to Blues

After a wild playoff run full of twists and turns, the Sharks' push to get into another Stanley Cup Final has come to an end. San Jose put up a gutsy late-game effort to stave off elimination, but saw their season come to an end with a 5-1 loss to the St. Louis Blues.

Here are three takeaways from Game 6:

The penalty kill was a killer 

With St. Louis' power play clicking and San Jose's penalty kill unit depleted due to injuries -- more on that in just a second -- the Sharks needed to stay out of the penalty box on Tuesday night. Luck was not on their side in Game 6, as the Blues capitalized on both of their opportunities on the man advantage. The second penalty San Jose took was especially upsetting because they were finally getting some momentum from Dylan Gambrell's goal at 6:40 in the period.

[RELATED: Couture's empty-net whiff could haunt Sharks all summer]

It didn't help either that the Sharks' big push at the end of the game to even the score was shut down by Jordan Binnington and the goal post. San Jose went on a tear in the third period in an effort to crawl out of their two-goal hole, but the Sharks' chances were all stopped.

The Tarasenko Effect 

One of the big keys in San Jose's victory in Game 1 was that they were able to keep Vladimir Tarasenko off of the scoreboard and basically rule him ineffective. Clearly, the mountain of criticism he received encouraged him to turn things around because he became an unstoppable force for St. Louis as the series wore on, culminating in a power-play goal in Game 6.

San Jose, on the other hand, didn't adjust and figure out how to stop him as he went on to register five points over Games 2 through 5. 

Once Tarasenko gained momentum, his line with Brayden Schenn and Jaden Schwartz became a threat that was difficult to contain. The Sharks also didn't have an offensive answer of their own.

The biggest impact was made by players who weren't there

The Sharks knew they were in an uphill battle heading into Game 6 with multiple key players injured, and the absence of Joe Pavelski, Tomas Hertl, and Erik Karlsson was apparent. Much like the last leg of the regular season when the Sharks lost seven straight games, the number of injured playmakers was too much for the team one the ice to make up for.

Now with their second season over, the focus will continue to center on Karlsson and Pavelski into the offseason. The future for both skaters is unclear as both are on a long list of Sharks players who will be unrestricted free agents this summer. San Jose's postseason push may be over, but there's no denying the team will still be making headlines before the next season gets underway.

Sharks' Erik Karlsson, Marc Edouard-Vlasic, Martin Jones excites Randy Hahn

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USATSI

Sharks' Erik Karlsson, Marc Edouard-Vlasic, Martin Jones excites Randy Hahn

It's a new era of Sharks hockey in San Jose with the departure of captain Joe Pavelski, but there are still plenty of reasons to be optimistic about next season. 

For Randy Hahn, the voice of the Sharks, it all starts with the team's defense. Specifically, it's the trio of Erik Karlsson, Marc Edouard-Vlasic and Martin Jones that has Hahn itching for the season to begin. 

Re-signing Karlsson was the focal point to the Sharks' offseason and San Jose's front office sealed the deal with an eight-year, $92 million contract. With new weight to his wallet, expectations have rocketed for Karlsson in Year 2 wearing teal. 

“There is huge expectations for Erik Karlsson, as there should be and as I’m sure he expects,” Hahn recently said to Blades of Teal's Quentin Thorne. “He is one of the premier players in the league, and has been especially for the last five to six years.”

Karlsson struggled with injuries during his first season with the Sharks, but he still managed to post 45 points (three goals, 42 assists) in 53 regular-season games. He recorded 16 points (two goals, 14 assists) in 19 playoff games, which ranked second on San Jose.

When Karlsson did play, the Sharks went 30-23 in regular-season games and 10-9 in the playoffs.

While he's not a star like Karlsson, Hahn is intrigued to see the growth of Vlasic. 

“With a guy like Marc-Edouard Vlasic, I think the goal of the Sharks is to pair him with Karlsson next season,” Hahn said. “[Vlasic] being a tremendous defensive defender in the NHL and Karlsson being a tremendous offensive defender, and the second wave of offense coming from Brent Burns.”

Rounding out the trio is the Sharks' goaltender.

Jones had a down year where he posted a career-worst .896 save percentage and 2.94 goals against average. Clearly, Hahn still believes in him. 

[RELATED: Why Erik Karlsson's vision, deception stood out]

“Martin Jones is an excellent goalie, I don’t think he is elite yet, but next season I think he has a chance to be,” Hahn said. “The Sharks have a lot of confidence in Martin Jones and they know how good he can be.”

The Sharks open the 2019-20 regular season in Las Vegas, and all eyes will be on their defense taking away goals from the Golden Knights. 

Former Sharks captain Joe Pavelski officially sells San Jose mansion

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USATSI

Former Sharks captain Joe Pavelski officially sells San Jose mansion

It's official, Joe Pavelski no longer is a San Jose resident.

The former Sharks captain has sold his mansion in the affluent Willow Glen neighborhood for $3.6 million, according to The Mercury News.

The original purchase of the five-bedroom, five-and-a-half bathroom house was in 2013 for $2.7 million. 

This 4,400-square-foot mansion is surrounded by redwood trees, with a front yard full of flowers and a manicured lawn. And when it comes to the background, it's the perfect lounge area ... with plenty of splashes of teal.

Pavelski bids farewell to the Bay Area after he signed a three-year, $21 million deal with the Dallas Stars. 

Now he can check off one more thing from his moving to-do list.

GALLERY OF PAVELSKI'S FORMER SAN JOSE MANSION