Thornton still thinks Sharks are “one of the best teams in the NHL”

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San Jose Sharks captain Joe Thornton didn’t give a specific reason why the St. Louis Blues dominated his team in the playoffs in an interview with CSNBayArea.com’s Kevin Kurz.

“They were just a better team. Flat out, they were just a better team than us last year,” Thornton said.

GM Doug Wilson points to one theme, though: aggressiveness.

“One of the bigger issues that we talked about initially was the identity of this hockey team. We got away a little bit from it,” said Wilson on June 18. “The passive reactive…that’s not part of our identity or how we want to play. There were moments where it crept in.”

Wilson didn’t make huge changes, with the biggest moves coming in adding Brad Stuart and Adam Burish.

Even so, Thornton believes the Sharks remain among the NHL’s elite.

“I still think we’re one of the best teams in the NHL,” Thornton said. “It would have been strange seeing some guys go after we’ve done some pretty good things. Obviously, we haven’t won a championship, and that’s our goal, but with getting Stuey and getting Adam I think we’re a better team than last year. Hopefully we can show it.”

Some believe that time is running out for them to “show it,” though.