Why the Sharks' rebuild is necessary
July, 3, 2014
By Craig Custance | ESPN.com
Cary Edmondson/USA TODAY SportsA lack of team chemistry was detrimental to the Sharks during this year's Stanley Cup run.San Jose Sharks general manager Doug Wilson had been so open about his offseason plans that he seemed a little surprised when he was asked for further details at the draft.
“I can’t be any more honest than I have been,” he said. “What did I leave out?”
It just seems hard to grasp from the outside. The Sharks put up 111 regular-season points, more than both Chicago and Los Angeles. They jumped to a 3-0 lead in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs against Los Angeles before the Kings came charging back to win the series. It was a devastating moment but one that doesn’t look quite as damning after the Kings went on to win the Stanley Cup in impressive fashion.
If Marc-Edouard Vlasic (knee) is healthy and the Sharks get a little bit better goaltending in Round 1, they probably finish the job. And then who knows?
It seemed like a pretty easy fix. Bring in another top-four defenseman in place of Dan Boyle, who was traded, upgrade your goaltender, and take another stab at it next season.
Up close, it was a different story.
“When you watch that series, when [the Kings] dug down deeper, we had players trying to do it themselves,” Wilson said. “We missed Vlasic, he was our most irreplaceable player. I can’t avoid the truth of that. Then you watched the odd-man rushes given up. Game 5 in our building -- they re-established their game. We looked like we never played together.”
It got only worse after that.
“We kind of unraveled. That’s when it showed its head,” Wilson said.