Wednesday, April 23, 2008

5-3! Sharks Advance

Groggy this morning. Being the fan of a west coast NHL team and living in the eastern time zone can be a pain during the playoffs. Last night's 7th game against the pesky Flames started at about 10:15PM hereabouts. At a quarter to 1AM this morning it was done and the Sharks will move on to face the Dallas Stars in the second round. The entire game was played at a pace one would expect from a deciding game in the playoffs. The crucial moments came in the 2nd when SJ rattled off 4 straight goals. The first two of those came from a kid playing for just a half millski a year-- 38 year old Jeremy Roenick.
Coach Ron Wilson made JR a healthy scratch in game 6. He was not pleased since it could have been the clinching game he was missing but, unlike the Jeremy of years past, he bit his tongue and didn't fume and cause problems. He did what he's done all year for this team-- he put the team ahead of JR. There was method to Wilson's madness as it gave the old man fresh legs for last night's contest. He didn't even lace up skates since last Thursday. Monday night Coach Wilson sent Roenick a text message telling him how much he was counting on a big contribution from the 38 year old Tuesday night. Jeremy loved the message and contribute he did. Two goals, two assists. Beats retirement.
The picture here (Roenick hugs Nolan) is as bittersweet as it gets for charter members of the SJSharks fan club. Jeremy Roenick will never mean as much to the Sharks as their long-time captain Owen Nolan. But last night Nolan was the enemy. Until the game was done. When once again he became Sharks fan favorite Owen Nolan. Friday night at the Shark tank, game one, Dallas. Bring it on.