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Challenging early schedule looms for Sharks

Sep 1, 2014, 7:33 PM EDT

Antti Niemi, Marc-Edouard Vlasic AP

The general feeling is that San Jose Sharks management seemed on the verge of panic this summer, yet for the most part, the team’s core remains intact. Looking at their schedule, one cannot help but ask: will they overreact to a slow start?

The New York Rangers played the first nine games of the 2013-14 season on the road, and while they ended up fine, they looked shaky for much of the campaign … especially as Alain Vigneault settled in. With 16 of their first 21 games away from “the Shark Tank,” one wonders if things could get rocky.

Here’s the full run, which looks that much more daunting to begin the month of November (home games in bold):

Oct. 8: at Los Angeles
Oct. 11: vs. Winnipeg
Oct. 14: at Washington
Oct. 16: at New York Islanders
Oct. 18: at New Jersey
Oct. 19: at New York Rangers
Oct. 21: at Boston
Oct. 23: vs. Columbus
Oct. 25: vs. Buffalo
Oct. 26: at Anaheim
Oct. 28: at Colorado
Oct. 30: at Minnesota
Nov. 1: vs. New York Islanders
Nov. 6: vs. Vancouver
Nov. 8: at Dallas
Nov. 9: at Chicago
Nov. 11: at Florida
Nov. 13: at Tampa Bay
Nov. 15: at Columbus
Nov. 16: at Carolina
Nov. 18: at Buffalo

Things turn around for the Sharks after that run, as they’ll play six home games in row beginning on Nov. 20 and 11 of 13 in San Jose from Nov. 20 through Dec. 20, so hopefully management (or perhaps even ownership) will keep that in mind.

While they were better at home (29-7-5) last season, the Sharks were still pretty strong on the road (22-15-4), so it’s not crazy to imagine this talented group weathering the storm anyway. That’s especially true if the West continues its domination of the East in 2014-15, as 10 of those 15 road contests come against squads from the other conference.

(H/T to NHL.com’s fantasy crew for pointing out this tough start.)

  1. kingsfan93 - Sep 1, 2014 at 9:01 PM

    This person that wrote this article must be a Sharks fan trying to make people feel sorry for the Sharks.

    • sjsblitz - Sep 1, 2014 at 11:01 PM

      Opposite, think we get brought up because they love to agitate us. Im pretty sure Im not the only one hoping that the media leaves us alone

    • skr213 - Sep 2, 2014 at 1:34 PM

      Article about the Sharks? Of course, first comment is by a Kings fan. Keep it classy and not-at-all-trolly LA fans!

  2. kicksave1980 - Sep 1, 2014 at 9:09 PM

    Only 5 of their first 21 games at home? That’s kinda crazy. I guess the other way you could look at it as a team would be that it offers a good opportunity to build that closeness that only comes with road trips early on.

  3. billiam55 - Sep 1, 2014 at 10:23 PM

    that game at LA should be interesting

  4. easez1 - Sep 1, 2014 at 11:35 PM

    There is no way to anticipate how the Sharks will deal with opening the season on the road in LA, but beyond that, an extended road trip may be just what they need to find themselves, gel as a team (figure out who the co-workers are versus the team mates), and try to right their ship.

  5. blomfeld - Sep 2, 2014 at 1:59 AM

    ALL WILL BE WELL

    As an ardent, staunch and ‘values-driven’ supporter of the reigning SC champion LA Kings, I believe that our Californian Shark brothers will be ‘just fine’ despite this extended trip away from home at the start of their season. The bottom line is that California hockey rules, with us Kings, Sharks and Ducks being a lock on the ‘top 3′ positions in the Pacific Division this year. In fact, perhaps PHT would’ve been better served to do a piece on the ‘pathetic’ Canadian teams instead eh ? Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton have now all become weak ‘flotsam’ which we Californians have every intention of ‘putting the boots to’ this year with due prejudice !

    *** special video selection c/o Blomfeld & Wo Fat Entertainment Systems LLC ***

    IT’S OKAY SHARK FRIENDS … YOU’LL BE FINE :)

  6. mnwildandcaps8 - Sep 2, 2014 at 3:16 AM

    Blom you make me hate the Kings. Yes they won the cup but next year I really hope the Sharks won your Kings!

    • blomfeld - Sep 3, 2014 at 12:04 AM

      Kiss my ‘pie chart’ you pathetic loser !!!

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