(Ed. Note: As the Stanley Cup Playoffs continue, we're bound to lose some friends along the journey. We've asked for these losers, gone but not forgotten, to be eulogized by the people who knew the teams best: The fans who hated them the most. Here is The Royal Half, Los Angeles Kings blog, fondly recalling the 2011-12 San Jose Sharks. Again, this was not written by us ... OK, by all of us. Also: This is a roast and you will be offended by it, so don't take it so seriously.)
By The Royal Half
You see… I'm from Los Angeles.
And when I say "I'm from Los Angeles" I don't mean I'm from Riverside or just outside Orange County. My childhood was spent at most of the locations featured in Fast Times at Ridgemont High and as one of the three people who were actually born and raised in Los Angeles there is one thing I've learned growing up in Southern California…
I hate Northern California.
This is pretty much anyone from Northern California.
Did you ever see that episode of South Park where the Dad buys a Prius and all of a sudden his farts stop smelling and he moves the family to San Francisco because they fit in better there? That pretty much sums up Northern California for me.
So imagine my shock when it was announced in 1990 that the Los Angeles Kings were no longer going to be California's sole representation in professional ice hockey and that the new team was going to be based in San Francisco! (or San Jose, whatever, what's the difference, really?)
Do they even like hockey up there?
I thought it was just all patchouli and crazy windy roads and Joe Montana.
You really can't get more "90's" than this.
Oh wait… yes you can.
That goalie riding the shark makes me really, really uncomfortable.
The real issue I have with the San Jose Sharks is that so many of my favorite Los Angeles Kings players have ended their careers in awkward teal instead of the iconic silver and black (or ugly purple and silver glitter) that I hoped to remember them in.
I'm just thankful I never had to witness this atrocity…
I know that these Puck Daddy Eulogies are usually an opportunity for opposing fans to talk trash, poke fun and generally dump on a hated rival.
But when it comes to the San Jose Sharks… I have the complete opposite feeling. In fact… as a 20+ year Los Angeles Kings fan…
I want to thank the San Jose Sharks.
Thank you not only for never winning the Stanley Cup so that the Kings would be the only California team to not have won it… but thanks for not even playing in the finals once, despite making the playoffs in 15 of the 20 seasons your franchise has been in existence.
In order to get to the Arena
you have to past through the San Jose Sharks Alley of Legends.
It has to be an alley because if it were an actual road
it would have to lead to somewhere.
Thank you, San Jose Sharks, for pulling off a trade over the summer that was supposed to improve a team that struggled to make it out of the 1st round against an Anze Kopitar-less Los Angeles Kings but instead failed to make it out of the 1st round against a team led by… Andy McDonald?!? And thank you, San Jose Sharks, for proving that this team didn't have to win the Pacific Division in order to completely disappoint their fans in a postseason.
And thank you in advance for the panic moves Doug Wilson will make this upcoming summer. With Patrick Marleau's point totals having decreased each of the last three seasons and with a donut hole on the scoresheet during this years playoffs, you can bet it's going to be really hard for Marleau to smile when his trade is announced.
Because it's hard for him to smile at any time really.
And thank you for proving yet again that Joe Thornton isn't a clutch performer. In fact, this season, Thornton had his lowest number of goals scored since his 2nd year in the NHL.
Let's be honest… if Joe Thornton turns in one more disappointing performance… he pretty much completes his transformation into Gary Busey.
And thank you, Dan Boyle, for scoring more goals into your own net last playoffs than you did into the opposing net this one.
And I'd really like to thank Brent Burns. For when everyone thought he would be the missing link for the Sharks defense… Burns showed in early August just how off-target this Sharks team would be...
… by planking wrong.
Seriously, who planks wrong?
Thanks to Joe Pavelski, who even though he failed to record a point for the Sharks in this post-season, he still went a long way to take the pressure off of Anze Kopitar in the race for the ugliest forward in the Western Conference.
Thanks to Ryan Clowe for showing that in the playoffs, he has the hardest time scoring from the ice instead of the bench.
Thanks to San Jose Sharks color analyst Drew Remenda for looking exactly like Mr. Svenning from Mallrats.
This isn't a joke… I actually think this is really cool.
And special thanks to Antti Niemi … because without you… the Pacific Division would just be known as that division full of really talented young goaltenders.
And thanks to Todd McLellan, who, even though he has won nearly 50 games a season during his 4 years as the Sharks Head Coach, will probably be replaced over the summer by the one person in the Sharks Organization who truly knows what this team needs to do to win.
Says Coach Ray Ratto: "Just win the game!"
But the biggest individual thanks goes to rising Sharks superstar, Logan Couture. Because with your goofy face and even goofier best friend… you bring a smile to everyone in the NHL.
These actually aren't photoshops…
but real photos of Logan Couture and Drew Doughty growing up.
If it were up to me, I'd break California in half at Fresno and make it two states. You couldn't find two groups of people more different than Northern and Southern Californians.
Sure, they may say that those of us from Southern California are self-absorbed and self-obsessed... but at least we look good while doing it.
Thanks to the San Jose Sharks for finally winning the big game. You know… the last game of the season which allowed the Los Angeles Kings to face-off against the Vancouver Canucks instead of the St. Louis Blues.
Who says you guys from San Jose always choke?
Suck, it NorCal. We're going to the 2nd Round!