It's a formality at this stage of the season but we are contractually obliged to say-- the San Jose Sharks face a must-win game tonight against the Dallas Stars in order to keep their playoff hopes within reasonable reach.
A regulation loss, while not the final death blow, would put them in a position even more precarious than the one they find themselves in right now. With Los Angeles in Minnesota, and Phoenix hosting Anaheim, there will be no shortage of moving and shaking in the Western Conference tonight. With a win the Sharks could stay in 9th place or move into the 7th depending one whether that victory comes in regulation and how other games result.
Certainly razor thin margins right now.
Some other notes to tide you over before game time:
- Antti Niemi will be in net tonight for San Jose; Kari Lehtonen, who played last night in a 5-2 loss to the Canucks, will start for Dallas.
- Douglas Murray will be a gametime decision tonight according to David Pollak of Working The Corners.
- Kevin Kurz of CSN's Sharks Talk blog breaks down what to watch for in tonight's game.
Puck drops at 7:37 PM.