This season is a reminder that in sports anything can happen. The San Jose Sharks have been a semi-elite team for a decade with 2 consecutive appearances in the western conference finals. This year they may not even make the playoffs.
The goaltending has been bad. Anti Niemi seems to have lost it. he won the Stanley Cup with Chicago, but sometimes looks like he's a rookie, way over his head. The defense, supposedly better gives up the puck way too easily. The team overall has been playing sloppy all year.
So while rumors abound that the team is in the hunt for Rick Nash, what GM Doug Wilson should really be doing is finding a way to rebuild the team around a young core of Joe Pavelski & Logan Couture. BTW: Nashville asked for Couture in trade for Nash. That didn't go over very well with Wilson.
So what does the team do? How does a team that went to the conference finals the last two years suddenly fall apart? This team isn't losing games by a goal, they're losing but wide margins. They are giving up4,5,6 goals nightly. It's amazing they aren't in last place. Three players have over 20 goals, most of the top line players have high +/- ratings & still the team is a disaster. The ridiculous 9 game road trip (courtesy of a yearly Feb tennis tournament at the Shark Tank) has been a nightmare.
It would be easy to say "fire the coach" & I'm not against that move. It seems that the team has stopped listening to Todd McLellan, & he has started to sound like Ron Wilson in criticising his players. But when you play this poorly for an extended stretch, you should expect it.