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Happy Joe Thornton Day!

Thanksgiving? LAME! Christmas? Overdone. No, the holiday us Sharks fans should observe is 11/30 -- JOE THORNTON DAY! One year ago today, we got a gift from the hockey gods (or a steal from Mike O'Connell, depending on how you look at it). Joe's the gift that keeps on giving, at least until he probably hits 33 or 34 and starts to slow down.

As for my own Joe Thornton Day memories, I remember that night quite vividly. It was a dreary unending losing streak and I sat down to watch a Tivo-ed (half an hour delay) version of the Sharks/Stars matchup. FSN Bay Area had flashed the line combos on the bottom, but I noticed right away that it didn't match up what was on the ice. Randy Hahn and Drew Remenda soon picked up on it too, and they started speculating about the missing Marco Sturm, Wayne Primeau, and Brad Stuart. I remember thinking that the Bruins were rumored to be shopping Sergei Samsonov, and I briefly wondered about Thornton before telling myself there was no way.

My girlfriend, whose favorite player at the time was her "German Cowboy" Marco Sturm, was getting ready to leave for a nightshift at work. I told her that this looked like Marco got traded, but I'd call her and let her know. Needless to say, she wasn't really happy when she left for work.

Then, between the first and second period, Randy Hahn said the infamous words. "The Sharks now have two Thorntons. Joe Thornton." My jaw literally and figuratively dropped. I had spent the whole time before then bashing Doug Wilson on my blog about how he didn't do crap. I took everything back the next day.

I remember Drew Remenda looking really disturbed talking about it, probably because Stuart and Sturm were really beloved by Sharks fans. Still, it was Joe Freakin' Thornton. I had no bones about it -- Doug Wilson totally ripped off the Bruins. The next day, Bob McKown's show on Toronto's Fan 590 was filled with pissed off Leaf fans saying "Why didn't we get Joe?" Listening to whiney Leafs fans is always entertaining.

My girlfriend called me on her break and I told her that I had good and bad Sharks news. She instantly yelled a very Luke Skywalker "Nooooooooooooooooo!", but I assured her that Joe Thornton was ridiculously better than her beloved Marco. It took about two games to make her forget that #19 ever beloned to Mr. Sturm.

With Brad Stuart and Marco Sturm telling the media that they'll probably test free agency, it looks like the Bruins will get absolutely nothing for trading their franchise player (though SI has a good take on how it shook the mentality of the club). As for Sharks fans, make sure you have a drink in honor of Joe Thornton Day!