Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more
- Henry V
Not to get too far ahead of ourselves, but a win tonight would set up the Blues to clinch the series at home on Saturday. You thought the place was nuts before.. just imagine IF.
But first, the Blues must win tonight. While our friends at Fear The Fin have kept things pretty non-combative, we've gotten some heat from another SBN site, Battle Of California, which is all in fun. One of the things that they've tried to goad us with is that, apparently, the Mississippi River is just gross, and the San Francisco Bay is far superior in every way. Never mind that river traffic was key to the settling of California in the first place (your welcome, guys, by the way). While the Mississippi is admittedly muddy, I can't see it being any grosser than the SF Bay. Between the North Pacific Garbage Patch and the thousands of cargo vessels that pollute their way through that harbor, it's got to be one dirty place. Feel free to defend the Mighty Mississippi over on BoC or on Twitter; it shouldn't be hard. It's not just the history of St Louis, but the history of the United States that you're supporting. To hate on the Mississippi is to hate on America, and if you're going to to that, well.... we just can't be friends. The Mississippi Rules!
Musical Note: I can think of two songs about or mentioning San Francisco Bay. There's a metric shit-ton of songs about the mighty Mississippi. Take THAT Megalodon!
The Enemy: These are brief, because we already know more than we care to about these jackasses. Sharks goaltender Antti Niemi has played all 3 games, and has posted a stat line of 2.67 GAA and .910 SV%. Martin Havlat has scored 2 goals, the only Sharks player to do so, and 4 players are tied at 3 points each. Special teams have been, well, special for San Jose like in "special schools" and "special buses". The SJ power play has gone 2 for 11 during this series, and their penalty kill has allowed 5 goals on 13 opportunities.
At Wednesday's practice, coach Todd McLellan showed a new lineup. From the AP Preview:
The Sharks tinkered with lines and lineup changes at practice Wednesday in an indication of possible alterations for Game 4 on Thursday when they look to tie the series at two games apiece.
Patrick Marleau moved from top-line wing to second-line center, flipping spots with Logan Couture. Michal Handzus and Brad Winchester also were skating on the bottom two lines and could replace T.J. Galiardi and Dominic Moore if coach Todd McLellan decides to go with those moves.
(crosses fingers) Please play Winchester ... Please play Winchester .....
Final Verse: The puck drops at 9:30 PM St Louis time, with the GDT coming along shortly beforehand. The broadcasts are on multiple outlets again: the St Louis area can watch this on Fox Sports MW as usual, and other markets can tune in on NBC Sports Network (the former VS). The radio call will be on KMOX 1120 AM. Until then, consider this your pregame warmup. Gather here, slurp your coffee, shake the cobwebs from your pregame nap, and buckle in. This is a big one.
Who here thinks that the Sharks have ... well, jumped the shark?
Fonzie Jumps the Shark (via carpalton)