May 1, 2014, 1:39 AM EDT
With the San Jose Sharks now eliminated from the playoffs, having coughed up a 3-0 series lead to the L.A. Kings in the first round, there is sure to be increasing speculation about the future of head coach Todd McLellan.
The collapse was finalized Wednesday. The Sharks lost to the Kings in the seventh and deciding game, as L.A. became the fourth team in National Hockey League history to come back from down three-games-to-none to win the series.
Before the post-season got underway, one our Pressing Question segments asked: Can the Sharks get over past playoff hurdles? Well, for 2014 at least, we have the most recent answer.
“I’m responsible for this group,” said McLellan after the decisive loss, as per Elliotte Friedman of CBC.
“Low point since I’ve been here … that’s an easy one to answer,” McLellan added, as per Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun.
His handling of the goalie situation – pulling Antti Niemi twice in the series, then starting Alex Stalock in Game 6 and going back to Niemi in Game 7 – will surely be criticized moving ahead in the coming days.
But the Sharks didn’t get much from their top players as this series continued:
- Joe Thornton: Zero points in the final four games.
- Patrick Marleau: Seven points in the first four games, but zero points in the final three.
- Joe Pavelski: Six points in the first four games, but zero points in the final three.
- Logan Couture: Zero points in the final five games.
“Their defence just swallowed us up … It’s just so disappointing right now,” said Thornton, as per Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail.
- Could Lundqvist start Saturday for the Rangers? 0
- Five big games to watch this weekend 4
- Video: Kessel, Booth get into altercation at Leafs practice 31
- Playoff watch — what the bubble teams need to do 28
- After Howard fails to ‘bounce back,’ Mrazek to receive ‘opportunity’ 34
- Bruins can’t hold Ducks off, suffer sixth loss in a row 32
- Ticket punched: Rangers become first team to clinch 2015 playoff berth 14
- Coyotes ‘win’ against Sabres in OT 52
- Marchand: If Bruins miss playoffs, ‘this is going to be a much different group next year’ 20
- Is Lecavalier offering to retire early to facilitate trade out of Philly? 28
- Dreger: ‘In Kessel’s case, I firmly believe he’s going to be traded’ (73)
- Red Wings beat Blues in OT, but should winning goal count? (56)
- Tank-worthy? Connor McDavid finishes OHL season with 120 points in 47 games (56)
- Coyotes ‘win’ against Sabres in OT (52)
- Report: No fine or suspension for Tyler Toffoli’s hit on Alex Burrows (51)