Originally written on Couch Tarts  |  Last updated 5/16/12

GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 26: Head coach Todd McLellan of the San Jose Sharks during the preseason NHL game against the Phoenix Coyotes at Jobing.com Arena on September 26, 2009 in Glendale, Arizona. The Coyotes defeated the Sharks 2-0. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

TMac's back, back in Teal and that's where he's going to stay, for at least one more season anyway.

After the Sharks abysmally early first season exit, many assumed Todd McLellan was on his way out the door. He was brought in to do one thing, and that was win a Cup. In four years, he has yet to accomplish this goal. He did manage to help Team Teal
get to the Conference Finals twice in back to back years, although that feat was sandwiched between two very early exits.

Part of the problem for McLellan is that anything short of the Finals (and I contend WINNING those Finals) is considered a failure.
Part of this comes from how and when TMac came into the Sharks organization. He was brought in on a high note, having just won the Cup with Detroit, and having a very solid winning record that promised a lot. Ron Wilson had just been given the boot after several consistent,
but largely disappointing, second round exits. The team didn't seem to want to play for him anymore, and it showed. Fans rode high
on the fact that TMac had won at every level he had coached for and hoped, perhaps even assumed that he would immediately lead the Sharks to a Cup.

It didn't work that way.

This year showcased many of the same issues that played the team last season; inconsistency, poor special teams play, lack of secondary scoring. Clearly something was amiss with the system, but it couldn't have been the only thing. I believe that TMac has a good sense for how the team should be playing, but translating that into a winning system is harder than it seems. It's a combination of many things, including personal buying in, your assistant coaches, and the guys you have on your team.

Take the blue line for example. Douglas Murray and Dan Boyle are to fairly solid D-men that compliment each other and make up for the others weaknesses. This season though, both seemed to have lost a step. How much does it hurt your team overall when your top defensive pair suddenly is playing like they should be your second or third?

Injuries plagued the Sharks, preventing many of them from ever hitting their stride. The PK was just awful. Passive and ineffective, it seemed more inclined to wait for the play to come to it rather than challenge aggressively before the opposing team crossed into the Sharks' zone. There was no neutral zone control at all. Passes were all over the place and no one seemed to be communicating
effectively night after night. Niemi started out alright but then struggled down the back half. Griess looked to e the saving grace in net, but he to faltered down the stretch.

All these issues seem to be more of a perfect storm of things happening all at once, rather than the results of one man. Team management seems to think so too, as they are supposedly giving Todd the green light, while potentially shuffling his assistant. It could be that his method was being executed or communicated well at the assistant level. Woodcroft might be brilliant on video ut not as good at the PK.
Matt Shaw was accused of being unemotional and disconnected during the time he filled in for an injured Todd McLellan. Perhaps the Sharks simply lackthe right combination of coaches behind the bench. Perhaps they need to shake up some of their now aging core and focus on growing their younger players. Perhaps winning it all isn't as easy as it looks.

Either way, I'm fine with the decision to keep TMac here in San Jose. I think he's a good coach with very good potential, but not everything has fully clicked yet. Look at a guy like Barry Trotz. He's taken how long to get his team to round 2 and Nashville has stood behind him. It's a combination of things that get your team to the promised land, not just one man. Hopefully, rounding out the bench with some fresh blood, a few trades and moves over the summer, and the Sharks will be sitting pretty to make a real run for th Cup in the 2012-2013 season.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Cole Hamels chose Rangers over Astros

Tom Brady lawsuit transferred from Minnesota to Manhattan

LeGarrette Blount failed conditioning test

Trent Richardson 'reclamation project not going so well'

Geno Smith laughed at being ranked last in QB poll

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Penn State trash talks Notre Dame Twitter over 'Rudy'

Report: Aroldis Chapman unlikely to be traded

Mets’ trade for Carlos Gomez called off despite reports

Report: Rangers to acquire Cole Hamels from the Phillies

WATCH: Tulo hits first home run with Blue Jays

NFLPA officially files Brady lawsuit, wants QB to play Week 1

Jets fans fly "Cheaters Look Up" banner over Patriots practice

Dodgers upgrade rotation in unexpected, intelligent way

For some NFL players, life begins at undrafted

NBA's Africa game: A tribute to Hakeem Olajuwon

Top storyline for each NFL team heading into training camp

Texas QB commit has great anti-Oklahoma T-shirt

WATCH: Tim Tebow does monster leg workout

Farrell: Sandoval's conditioning 'continues to be addressed'

Revis won't wear Super Bowl ring around Jets teammates

Former NBAer Vin Baker now works at Starbucks

Can Preller fix the mess in San Diego?

Mike Leach compares Deflategate to Kardashians

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!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Cole Hamels chose Rangers over Astros

Can Preller fix the mess in San Diego?

Next summer's top 10 NBA free agents

Who is the NL's new top shortstop?

Cardinals HC Bruce Arians calls Jen Welter a 'trailblazer'

Mets still act like a small-market team

Tom Brady: I did nothing wrong

NFL upholds Tom Brady's suspension, legal battle likely

Cardinals hire first female NFL coach

Larry Bird: Michael Jordan would kill me in 1-on-1 now

Seau family: HOF broke their word

Kobe to see time at power forward next year

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker