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Sharks Gameday: The Perfect Storm? Maybe Not

Yesterday, I joked with Earl Sleek that tonight's Sharks/Stars game seemed like the perfect storm for the Sharks to get their first loss at home. After all, Evgeni Nabokov is out, Sergei Zubov is in, the Stars have been trying to figure out something to inspire them to a win (signing Mark Parrish, obviously, is the key), and it's a big Saturday-night tilt between conference rivals.

Seems like just the type of situation that used to drive Sharks fans nuts. The team probably had a 30/70 percentage split of meeting the challenge of an occasion last season versus appearing listless and confused.

Now? Maybe the NHL's scheduling staff is on the team's side. First Detroit comes to the Golden State to face Anaheim, then less than 24 hours later, skates out on HP Pavilion ice. Now the Stars have to do the same thing.

Instead of using my "Oh crap!" negative thinking that still lingers from the Ron Wilson era, I'm going to look on the brighter side of things (don't worry Sleek, I'm not stealing positivity). Boucher's played well so far, the Sharks have overcome all of the moments of adversity (big and little), and Dallas is hopefully tired after the game in Anaheim. Zubov is one of those freak-of-nature players that never seems to get rattled or fatigued, but I'm hoping that he won't be in tip-top shape by playing back-to-back against two tough division rivals.

From the Sharks' perspective, I'm not sure if Alexei Semenov is in, but here's an unnerving stat -- in all of the games that Semenov has played, the Sharks have given up 4+ goals in all but one of them. Coincidence? A total trickling down of Semenov's total suckitude? I don't know, but if there were three things I could wave a magic wand and control tonight, it'd be:

1) A better power play
2) More shots in the slot from Jonathan Cheechoo
3) Strong team defense and no minimal bad turnovers, which means sitting Semenov