28 games possible.
57% win percentage. Totally possible.
The Washington Capitals are the favorite going in. There is a lot of talk about Pittsburgh as well. Also among the early favorites is Chicago, and of course, Detroit. New faces in the playoffs this year are Colorado, Phoenix and L.A. If you would have told me last year that these three teams would be in the top 8 for the West... I would have thought for sure the Sharks wouldn't be in it at all. What about Nashville? These guys are in every year. They never quit. Then of course there is Vancouver. They were a scoring phenom this season instead of just riding on Luongo's coattails.
I'm not even going to worry about the East. There will only be one left in the end and we can worry about them after our 12th win. The goal now is to get through the west.
Early predictions from the hockey media seem to favor the Sharks in their series against the Avs. Of course they all have their little disclaimer about the team's past playoff performances. Again, we've earned that rep. So? Open mouth, add grain of salt and swallow.
I have to mention my favorite surprise media shout out of the year though. Out here in the west we are used to not getting any love from the hockey media, especially the Versus broadcasters. We get the criticism, we get the doubt and we get the scrutiny. And? We get that we get that. We even get being overlooked by the attention received by the Eastern conference. However, back in December much to my surprise Versus analyst Brian Engblom announced his Christmas wish was for the the San Jose Sharks Fans to have a Stanley Cup.
Thanks Brian! We are only 16 wins away!