10/13/07 boston 2, SHARKS 1
The home opener, a game 5 months in the making. All the hoopla surrounding the team, the introductions, the special pregame ceremonies, and just the general excitement over the return of hockey. A great time of the year, and a great game on the schedule. Until a transformer blows. Then the lights go out, the audio goes out, and the scoreboards go out. Then it's pitch black, fully quiet, and the slightest bit creepy.
Well, that was the home opener for the Sharks this year. Last year's game was weird in it's own right, featuring a 20 minute delay when Jonathan Cheechoo's skate went through the boards and an official was helped off the ice after catching a puck to the face, but Saturday's game was weird too. Several Sharks shots found the iron, and a few clearing attempts, including the attempt that lead to the game winning goal, were blocked by ill-positioned officials. Throw in the blackout and subsequent delay, the aforementioned fluky bounces, and a recorded goal horn that was sounded for really no apparent reason, and it was a funky night.
A poorly called and allowed goal by Patrice Bergeron was the only tally for most of the game. Former Shark Marco Sturm, making his first return to SJ, fell on a scrambling Evgeni Nabokov, and then hand passed the puck to Bergeron who put it in an open net. That was the only goal until the Sharks finally broke through in the final minute of the game, when Milan Michalek whacked the puck past lucky/good netminder Tim Thomas. Not 30 seconds later, however, Aaron Ward put the game winner behind Nabby on a play that should have seen the puck exit the zone. Instead, it bounced off referee Brad Watson, and onto the stick of a Bruin, who put it to Ward for the goal.
Just as quickly as they were home, they're gone again, making their final appearance in British Columbia, facing the Canucks again at the Garage (7:00 pm). Just over a week ago, the Sharks were in Vancouver, and had a stellar first period, including two goals from Jeremy Roenick, leaving him just 3 from 500. Roenick should be back in the lineup tonight after sitting out an injury sustained in Chicago last week. Mitchell-Thornton-Clowe is now the top line, for at least one shift. For whatever reason, the Sharks will be in teal tonight, and the Canucks will wear the home colors in San Jose on January 10th.
GO SHARKS (Don't black out again)