Jan 29, 2014, 4:39 PM EDT
Tonight in Edmonton and tomorrow in Calgary, the San Jose Sharks will play two of the worst teams in the NHL. After that, it’s four straight home games, followed by the 17-day Olympic break.
The Sharks should be favored in all six of those games, but head coach Todd McLellan is still wary.
“The issue that I’m sure a lot of teams will have is, let’s make sure we don’t go on the break early,” McLellan said, per CSN Bay Area. “Let’s make sure that we get to the finish line and stockpile as many points as possible. We’ve been good to this point. … We’re going to push hard, and we expect the players to respond, and then they can earn that time off.”
The Sharks are actually in a pretty unique spot. Nine points back of Anaheim and eight points ahead of Los Angeles in the Pacific Division, they couldn’t be much more solidified in second spot at this point in the season. It’s highly likely, though admittedly far from guaranteed, that second place is where they finish, meaning a first-round playoff match-up with the Kings (probable), Canucks (still possible), or Coyotes (you never know).
Chasing down the Ducks isn’t out of the question though. Not when you consider the Sharks have two games in hand and a less-than-harrowing schedule to finish the season.
- Kane’s OT goal ties Blackhawks – Blues series at 2-2 19
- Stars chase Andersen, tie series with Ducks 2-2 19
- Penguins blow three-goal lead, Columbus evens series 83
- NHL suspends Matt Cooke for seven games 96
- Ducks’ Getzlaf (upper body) isn’t available for Game 4 (Updated) 3
- Two years after winning the Cup, the Kings’ ‘mix’ comes into question 39
- Duck drama: Selanne to sit as healthy scratch in Game 4 15
- MacKinnon, Johnson and Palat named Calder Trophy finalists 12
- Sharks beat Kings in OT, take 3-0 stranglehold on series 43
- Rangers chase Emery, top Flyers for 2-1 series lead 56
- Video: Seabrook ejected for charging Backes; will face hearing (update) (153)
- Bad luck strikes twice: Lightning goal waved off, Stamkos takes knee to head (137)
- Keith doesn’t remember if he taunted Backes after Seabrook hit (125)
- Video: Lucic spears DeKeyser from behind (118)
- Flyers want to ‘punish’ McDonagh (113)