The San Jose Sharks will get an extended training camp.
That’s the optimist’s view of it, anyway, as reports surfaced on Thursday claiming San Jose would be the lone Western Conference team not to play on Jan. 19.
Instead, the Sharks will open the 2013 campaign in Calgary on Jan. 20.
Here’s more, from David Pollak of the San Jose Mercury News:
Because all games are being played within each 15-team conference, one franchise in the East and one in the West won’t be in action when the NHL resumes on Jan. 19.
A source familiar with the situation said that appears to be San Jose’s fate.
While starting on Jan. 20 could give the Sharks an extra day of training camp, it would have them returning to action on the same day as the NFC championship — a game the 49ers would be competing in if they get past Green Bay this weekend.
The Sharks went 2-1-1 against the Flames last season, posting a 1-0-1 record at the Scotiabank Saddledome.
It should be noted the NHL schedule likely won’t be released until Saturday — that being the day NHLPA votes on ratifying the new CBA — but there have been steady leaks as to which teams will open on Jan. 19.