Tonight's game is a test.
This is a nightmare scenario for the Sharks: they're way down in the standings, having big trouble scoring, and now Joe Thornton is out for two games. The Sharks were going to have to be tested like this eventually, so in some ways it's better that it's happening now, still early in the season, rather than in the playoffs. The team needs to show that they can rise to the occasion and deal with challenges like this.
How will the Sharks respond to adversity? Will we see a team without direction tonight, a team that couldn't score with Joe Thornton and certainly can't manage it without him? Or will we see a team that still has tons of talent up front prove to everyone that they can win games without their big guy?
Prediction: Sharks win 4-1, with goals from Marleau, Pavelski, Clowe, and Vlasic. Dan Ellis cries into his post-game caviar.