Monday, May 05, 2008

What's Next For The Sharks

It took a while, and had some promising looks, but the Sharks bow out of the playoffs in the second round for the third straight season. For any other team, this could be the one that has the most questions surrounding them.

Starting from the top, Ron Wilson's job behind the bench is undoubtedly in jeopardy and it would take a miracle or scandalous pictures to keep him there for another season. It seems that the second round seems to be killer for the Sharks. Especially since the Sharks have been a high seed in the playoffs, it's even more of a disappointment when you look at the big picture. The fate of Wilson will probably be decided quickly and painlessly.

Next would be the Jekyll and Hyde performance of the Sharks' top players. Joe Thornton had 10 points, but you expected more out of him-- while Brian Campbell and Patrick Marleau were showed up at some moments, but would disappear the next. The good thing is that players like Joe Pavelski and Ryan Clowe stepped up in the absence of the Sharks' top guns.

Full marks to Evgeni Nabokov, though. Often, he would keep the Sharks in the game-- especially in Game Six with his save on Brad Richards early on in the first overtime. In his first full season in the starter's role, Nabokov more than likely will take home the Vezina for his efforts this season. Nabby was a key cog in the Sharks' success and will be in year's to come. He just needs better support.

However aside from Campbell and maybe timely scorer Jeremy Roenick, the Sharks don't have to worry much about UFAs, as they have most of their squad sured -up for next season. Also, the debate on whether to trade Patrick Marleau before his no-trade clause kicks in on July 1st. Even with not much on his plate, Doug Wilson will have a lot of tough decisions to make in the next few weeks.

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