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Sharks Gameday: Your First Official Playoff Atmosphere Weekend

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7:00 PST
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40-32-6, 86 points 51-15-11, 113 points
7th in Western Conference
1st in Western Conference
Television
CSN-BA
Radio
98.5 KFOX, Sjsharks.com
Antagonists
Battle of California
Girl With A Puck

I was talking with Mike Chen over gmail chat earlier this week, and we were debating which situation would sweeter in the eyes of a Sharks fan- knock the Ducks out of the postseason by beating them soundly this weekend, or face them in an epic clash of California during April.

We didn't reach a consensus, but as my fingers work diligently to type this all out, it's safe to say we're looking at a win-win situation.

The funny thing about this weekend is that we're all going to see, "How these two teams stack up," and, "Who will have the mental edge going into a possible series." Just casually browsing the current NHL standings (am I the only one who stares at that thing for twenty minutes a day knowing full well that an update at the end of the day is more beneficial?), it seems as if the Sharks are also in a win-win situation when it comes to this weekend. Drop two and the Ducks are nearly solidified at the six-seven seed (which would likely pair them against the Wings). Win two and the Ducks might miss the playoffs, or, if there ends up being a BoC, the Sharks hold the "mental edge."

Of course, anything can happen.

As for Anaheim specifically, and this goes for most teams at this point in the season, they scare me a bit. Any blueline with Pronger and Niedermayer is a force to be reckoned with, and coupled with a front end that has been shooting the lights out lately, it seems as if they're ripe for a first round upset. They won a Cup only two years ago, have gone 8-2-0 in their last ten, and have stayed healthy (not knocking on wood) while playing a load of high pressure games down the stretch.

Drawing them this season would be comparable to Calgary last season. It wouldn't be a walk in the park, but then again, when is it ever in the NHL playoffs*?

*Nashville, stupid!

Prediction: Sharks win 2-0. Goals by Moen and Pavelski. Corey Perry claims his tears are just sweat, but Evgeni Nabokov knows better.

 

Go Sharks.