The San Jose Sharks are in a fight with the Anaheim Ducks to see who takes home the Pacific Division title and gets to avoid playing the Los Angeles Kings in the first round of the playoffs.
The Sharks lost to the Winnipeg Jets 4-3 on a late power play goal by Tobias Enstrom on Thursday night and hold a two point lead in the Pacific on the Ducks. The Sharks’ problem is that the Ducks have three games in hand.
As Kevin Kurz at CSNBayArea.com shares, San Jose knows they can’t lose games like that or else they’ll put themselves in trouble.
“We can’t give away points,” Joe Pavelski said. “We’ve given away a few too many lately. [Anaheim] has got the games in hand. If they do their job they’ll be there, but there’s still quite a bit of hockey left.”
That is true, there’s a lot of hockey to go, and when you look at the remaining schedules for the Ducks and Sharks, there are landmines to be found all over.
Out of the Ducks’ remaining 13 games, they have three games with Edmonton. However, their final four games are at Vancouver, home against the Sharks, at Los Angeles, and home against Colorado. Yikes.
Of their final 10 games, San Jose has two left against Colorado and close the season in Phoenix against a Coyotes team that may be fighting to make the playoffs.
As always, the mantra this time of year is, “Just win, baby.” Saying it and actually doing it are very different things.