Sharks: Comparing First 9 Games of ’14-’15 to ’13-’14


The San Jose Sharks have started this season 4-4-1 while last season they were 8-0-1 through the first nine games. Obviously last year’s start was hard to repeat, but they had almost the same exact team as last year.

Last season the first nine opponents for the Sharks were the Canucks (2), Coyotes, Rangers, Senators, Blues, Stars, Flames, and Red Wings. This season it has been the Kings, Jets, Capitals, Devils, Islanders, Rangers, Bruins, Blue Jackets, and Sabres. That is five non-playoff teams last year, and five this year. They beat all five last year, but have beaten only three of the five this year (lost one in the shootout).

Here is the difference. Of the four playoff teams that they played last year (in the first nine games), they beat three, and lost one in the shootout. This season however, of the four playoff teams they have played this year, the Sharks only have one win. What does this mean? This means the Sharks are a middle of the pack team so far this year. Last year they beat almost everyone; playoff and non-playoff teams. This year they have beat almost all of the non-playoff teams but have lost to most of the playoff teams. Can this change? Of course.

The Sharks have 16 players that are the same (not including Tyler Kennedy and James Sheppard who started this season on the IR). The coaches are the same. The Front Office is almost the same. So why is this year so different?

The Sharks had five of the first games last season at home, but this season only three of the nine have been at SAP Center. Last season the Sharks won all five home games, this season, they have won only one of the three. On the road last season, they won all four games except a shootout loss in Dallas, and this year they have won three of the six.

Now, lets get to the reason that the Sharks are on a four game loosing streak and are 16th in the league with more games played than everyone except two Eastern Conference teams.

One possible explanation is that they open the season with 16 of 21 games on the road. Maybe it is the fact that they have played so much to open the season. I think that it is a mix of both. It’s hard to go from no games for three months and then play nine games in 20 days. That includes having a five-game road trip to the east coast, with a three hour time difference. Once they start playing at home more they will climb there way up the standings and will be just fine.