On March 9th. 2015 the Sharks will host the Pittsburgh Penguins and your pal Ian is going to be Breaking It Down! This is your preview where I hope to give you some insight and opinions on not only our Sharks but their opponent of the night.
Know Your Team - The San Jose Sharks
Current Record (W-L-OTL): 32-26-8, 72 Points and 5th in the Pacific Division
Last 10 Games: 4-6-0
Power Play: 21.8% (5th.)
Penalty Kill: 79.6% (25th.)
Current Streak: Lost 1
Notes: SportsClubStats.com has our current chance to make the playoffs at 15.9%
Know Your Enemy - The Pittsburgh Penguins
Current Record: (W-L-OTL): 38-18-9, 85 Points and 3rd in the Metropolitan Division
Last 10 Games: 6-3-1
Power Play: 20.4% (7th.)
Penalty Kill: 85.4% (5th.)
Current Streak: Won 2
Notes: The Penguins are 14-5-2 against the Western Conference as well as 7-2-0 against the Pacific Division.
Ian Breaks Down The Penguins: The Pittsburgh Penguins are in the playoffs the only mystery for them at this point is who will they play against. A perennial playoff team the Penguins are lead by on the greatest players to ever lace up skates in Sydney Crosby (21 Goals , 45 Assists) and Evgeni Malkin (28 Goals, 39 Assists) is no slouch either. They one of the best special teams units in the league so the Sharks will have to move the puck well on the power play and avoid being put on the penalty kill too often. Starting in goal for Pittsburgh is Marc-Andre Fleury who's career numbers in 6 games against the Sharks are a record of 2-2-2 with a 2.51 GAA and .932 SV%.
Ian Breaks Down The Sharks: As far as success of the team goes my start at RSEN probably has not come at the greatest time, the Sharks playoff hopes are incredibly bleak right now as the teams that the Sharks are in contention with have made the most of their schedules thus far. Currently sitting in playoff positions are the Vancouver Canucks (78 pts. 92.2%), Calgary Flames (77 pts. 82.9%) who occupy the final two divisional seeds which I thought may be the only way the Sharks get in, this is looking like a daunting task at this point. The wild card seeds are owned by the central divisions Minnesota Wild (79 pts 82.6%) and the Winnipeg Jets (78 pts. 62.7%). Also outside of the playoffs with a real chance of finding their way in is the Los Angeles Kings (75 pts. 58.1%) unless a couple of these teams go on a massive slide the Sharks fate may be all but sealed. So what can the Sharks do at this point? Simple, they have to win games and hope the out of town scoreboard works in their favour. It appears there will be no lineup changes for the Sharks from their game in Vancouver so expect the Hannan - Burns defensive disaster to continue as Irwin continues to sit out day to day. Starting goaltender should come as no surprise as Antti Niemi will man the pipes for the Sharks.
My Prediction: Sharks eat Penguins it's how the food chain works.
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What are your thoughts on this upcoming game?