Originally written March 09, 2012 on Talk Hockey:
San_jose_sharks_652f


Rock bottom is such a harsh word to use for a team with so much talent and the playoff normality that this franchise and fan base have come to expect, but the word describes exactly how it feels these days to be around the San Jose Sharks.

Watching the Sharks' Joe Pavelski score a goal with just under two minutes to play in a crucial Pacific Division battle with the Dallas Stars Thursday night was as hyped as this team has been in just over a month.  However, when it rains it sure does pour on this team that is clearly in a mental and physical rut.

Moments later, the Stars responded with a game-tying goal, as has been per usual as of late for Dallas, and coincidentally per usual for the Sharks, as well.

Again, the Sharks had an opportunity to strike on a power play late in overtime, yet could muster nothing despite several great opportunities in front of the Dallas net.

Low and behold, the game went to a shootout, and it was then that we all knew what was coming next.

What were the odds a team with a lackluster mental game was going to pull out a win in a shootout on the road against one of the hottest teams in the NHL?

It did not matter at that point.  We all knew the loss was coming sooner or later for this team on Thursday night.

The Stars added to their Pacific Division lead, which is now a four games, and the Sharks continue to cling to the seventh or eighth spots in the Western Conference.

It is simply the way things are going for this San Jose team.  When things seem to go right, they tend to go wrong quickly.  It has become the norm these days.

But the Sharks did not play bad on Thursday, and that is the point of this whole ordeal.  They outshot a screaming hot team 48-35 on their opponent's home ice in the middle of a road-trip that has no choice but to come out a success.

Finally, we saw some significance from the Sharks, finally we saw some urgency and finally we saw some hard-nosed hockey.  It was the best game the Sharks have played since their Feb. 28 game against the Philadelphia Flyers, and i cannot remember when the best game before that occurred, and for good reason.  The important part is that the game against the Stars on Thursday night -- the best game they have played in recent memory -- still ended in a loss and a drop in the point standings in the Pacific Division.

Has panic set in for this team yet?

Better yet, where do we consider rock bottom to be?

No, the Sharks are not at rock bottom.  However, when a team has a handle on the division at the mid-season point, then proceeds to drop several games in a row while the rest of their division starts playing aggressive and competitive hockey, it might be just about time.
San Jose is a playoff hockey team, and despite these losses that seem to be inevitable to some extent, we can expect the Sharks to be playing in the Western Conference playoffs at one of the eight seeds, no matter how unlikely that seems to be these days.

But rock bottom is not far off, which shows you just how far this team has collapsed since they embarked on that miserable nine-game road-trip in mid-February.

Changing the momentum of this season starts with defeating their own division, and there are a lot of chances for that coming down the stretch of this season.

For more great posts, be sure to visit Bay Area Sports Talk.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Belichick: Pats 'didn't play well enough at all' against Chiefs

Astros new manager A.J. Hinch: ‘Goal is to win championships’

Oakland Raiders fire Dennis Allen after 0-4 start

Did Roger Goodell’s bodyguard assault a photographer?

Kobe Bryant, Deron Williams engage in war of words

Georgia RB Todd Gurley falsely accused of punching student

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Russell Westbrook: "I'm the best point guard" in NBA

Texas WR takes shot at Baylor ahead of big game

Jim Harbaugh: Deion Sanders' report is 'a bunch of crap'

Bills bench E.J. Manuel, Kyle Orton to start

Report: Jovan Belcher likely had CTE

Carmelo: Leaving NY would be hard after I 'forced my way here'

NFL Power Rankings: Week 4

Strahan to make cameo as stripper in 'Magic Mike' sequel

Chiefs player penalized for praying after touchdown

Bill Belichick laughs off QB question...literally

Patriots fan fails with American flag face paint

Joe Fauria's new puppy is responsible for his ankle injury

LaRon Landry suspended four games for PED violation

NBA GMs on the hot seat

Rockets GM Daryl Morey fires back at Mark Cuban

The most and least improved hitters of 2014

WATCH: Tom Wilhelmsen dances to 'Turn Down for What'

Michigan student newspaper calls for Brady Hoke's firing

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

NFL Power Rankings: Week 4

Raiders fire Dennis Allen after 0-4 start

Chiefs player penalized for praying after TD

Did Roger Goodell’s bodyguard assault a photographer?

Kobe, Deron engage in war of words

Belichick laughs off QB question

Joe Fauria's puppy caused ankle injury

Texas WR takes shot at Baylor

Jim Harbaugh rips Deion Sanders' report

NBA GMs on the hot seat

Bills bench Manuel for Kyle Orton

The most and least improved hitters

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.