Ranking the Bay Area’s Pro Sports Teams Part I
Mar 28, 2015; Philadelphia, PA, USA; San Jose Sharks goalie Alex Stalock (32) celebrates with center Joe Thornton (19) and center Patrick Marleau (12) after defeating the Philadelphia Flyers in overtime at Wells Fargo Center. The Sharks won 3-2 in a shootout. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
#7. San Jose Sharks
Although they have never raised the ever-desired Stanley Cup, the San Jose Sharks of the National Hockey League (NHL) have had quite a bit of success during the regular season. In fact, despite the disappointing 2015 season where they missed the playoffs, San Jose earned themselves a playoff spot every year between 2003-2014 (10 straight seasons, excluding the 2004-05 canceled season due to an NHL lockout). During those 10 seasons, the Sharks won six Pacific Division titles.
Nevertheless, the regular season has not been the problem, instead, getting through the Stanley Cup Playoffs has been their Achilles heal. Since their inception in 1991, San Jose has made it to the Conference Championship three times and lost each one of those series; thus, they never made it to the glorious championship series.
Perhaps the most successful and biggest fan favorite in Sharks history is franchise points and goals leader Patrick Marleau. The center Marleau has been with San Jose since 1997, and the additions of teammates Joe Thornton and Joe Pavelski have provided the franchise with a “Big 3” for over a decade.
The most important component that the Sharks have given to the Bay Area is provided the fans with an excitement and passion for hockey. Before the irregular Pacific storm in the Spring of 2011, the Bay had not experienced a drop of snow for over 35 years. As a result, hockey was almost unheard of in Northern California. Today, it is near impossible to walk outside without seeing some sort of San Jose Sharks apparel.
Hopefully newly hired head coach Peter DeBoer will bring some postseason strategies and can solidify their play to help lead the Sharks to their franchise’s first Stanley Cup championship.