2/20/08 NEW JERSEY 3, sharks 2
That's what we're at now. So glad I made this trip.
Thomas Greiss did all he could in net, Jonathan Cheechoo and Kyle McLaren added the offense, but it still wasn't good enough to pull the Teal off the skid. which at 5 games is their longest since they lost 10 straight in 2005. Greiss gave Evgeni Nabokov his second night off this year, unfortunately ending in the same result as the last time, making 17 saves in the losing effort.
For most of this year, the Sharks have been known as the road warriors, owning a mediocre record at HP, but a far superior mark when away from San Jose. Whatever the case, that strong visitor mentality has disappeared, if just momentarily, as the road losing streak is at 4 games. Kicked out by the SAP Open taking place currently at 525 W. Santa Clara, the Sharks have 5 more contests away from home to re-establish themselves as a good traveling team.Chance number 4 comes tonight, the 4th game in 5 nights for the Teal, and their last contest until Sunday, giving them ample rest time.
While last night's game wasn't great, at least the building was. The Prudential Center is exactly like it's nickname "The Rock" suggests, being a solid arena. The newest arena in the league, the Rock truly is a palace. Holding 17,625 when full, those that visit this building certainly have the opportunity for comfort. Those opting to splurge for club seats are treated with access to either of the concourse club lounges, aptly named "Fire" and "Ice". Free food and free sodas are always a good way to sell tickets, and lucky for my dad and I that the alcohol (fully stocked bar) cost just as much as always.
The Club level seats themselves are leather, an interesting luxury for hockey, and are branded with the familiar "NJ" logo. These seats, however, seem to be narrower than the red seats in the corner that I had the opportunity to try, making for a funny sight when two large fellows pile in next to each other. After McLaren brought the Sharks within one, I tried to stand up, but was impeded by the narrowness of the seats, and instead went more sideways, kept from going totally to the ground by the railing right next to me. I would again like to point out that the bar cost lots of money, clearing my name from being completely trashed at this point (I had one beer, and finished it by the 1st Intermission.
Tonight, the Sharks travel down the coast to Philadelphia to take on the Flyers (4:00 Pacific). The Flyers may be the one team in the NHL that's having a tougher time of things than the Sharks. Losers of 8 straight, Philly's depleted roster received some heartbreaking news yesterday, learning that top sniper Simon Gagne has been recommended to sit out the rest of this season with his concussion. On the shelf with Gagne are Steve Downie, Derian Hatcher, and Joffrey Lupul. Tonight's contest could be one that sees the winner emerge with a shootout victory, or more likely the win will come from a goaltender feeling pity for the opposing team's offense and turning around to deposit the puck into his own net.
Much like my train which is just pulling into Trenton, NJ right now before it continues to Philly, one of these teams will be pulling the brakes on their speeding losing streaks. Based on what I've heard about the Philly fans, I'm not sure which to hope for.
GO SHARKS (Just kidding, go Flyers, er Go Cheesesteaks, er, GO SHARKS)
This way to where, pray tell?
Prudential Center? Through these doors? Hooray.
Well that's handy, there's these cute little signs at the train station saying the Prudential Center is this way, and what do you know, there it is. Well done, signers.
Ooh, Devils logo on the floor in red light, scary.