Sunday, February 10, 2013
What Burns' return means to San Jose
By Luke Lapinski
After a phenomenal start in which they won all seven of the games they played in January, the San Jose Sharks are scuffling a little. They've now dropped four straight to fall to 7-2-2 on the year, and have seen the Anaheim Ducks slide in and take the division lead away in the process. But they did get some good news yesterday.
That's because Brent Burns returned to the lineup for the first time this year. The talented defenseman had missed the club's first 10 games with an undisclosed lower-body injury that may have been related to the hernia surgery he underwent last May. Whatever the cause, he appears to be good to go now, seeing over 20 minutes of ice time in his season debut. And that's huge for San Jose, who could use some stability along the blue line. He skated alongside Brad Stuart in Saturday's game, giving Todd McLellan a solid top defensive pairing to lean on. And he's someone that is more than capable of triggering the offense from the back end, scoring 28 goals over the last two seasons. Considering the Sharks have managed just five goals over their last four games, that's a trait that could come in handy right about now.