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Sharks Gameday: New Ways To Jinx

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Chicago Blackhawks (15-5-2) at San Jose Sharks (16-5-4), 7:30 PM PST

Just a short one today, as it's a busy Thanksgiving Eve, all culminating with a trip downtown for the game. That's right, barring any afternoon disasters, tonight will mark my first Sharks game of the season. Thanks to some personal family stuff, October and most of November were a bit chaotic, and my first foray back into normalcy was starting regular Gameday posts. With my return to the Shark Tank, the circle is now complete and I'll be taking in the ridiculous new 2008-09 banners for the first time in person.

(And while I swear this has nothing to do with finally getting HD, it sure made it a hell of a lot better).

Which, of course, means that I could upset whatever mojo the Sharks currently have going for them by my very presence. You guys know by now that I'm just a tad superstitious when it comes to sports, and part of my paranoia stems from the ridiculous belief that every single thing I do affects sports mojo, especially during the playoffs. Why could it possibly be that when the Sharks won every home game in the 2007-08 playoffs where I took an alternate route home and my dad and I feasted at the same place for breakfast? And when those patterns were broken due to time constraints -- horrific losses and another failed season. I won't even get into last year's screwed up playoffs.

It's clear that if the Sharks are going to be successful, it all depends on me. Not Evgeni Nabokov, Todd McLellan, or Joe Thornton. Me and my routine, and finding the best routine to make it all happen. That's why I'm a bit wary of my first game of the season.

To make things different this season, the insane drunk woman behind me has apparently moved seats and is no longer directly behind me. Instead, she's move over to the aisle to torment my friends. While this will inevitably make the game a bazillion times more enjoyable, it adds an unknown variable to the whole mix. Of course, the Sharks haven't won the Stanley Cup with insane drunk woman sitting directly behind me, so this could be a positive thing.

And this doesn't even address my jersey dilemma. Do I go with the teal Roenick, black Boyle, or the new teal blank authentic one I got as a gift? Decisions, decisions.

Oh, the game? Well, Torrey Mitchell's back in town but won't be playing tonight. No word on Dan Boyle, who's still hurting after blocking a shot from the evil Anaheim Sleeks. Boyle skipped the past two practices, but hopefully it's just precautionary, especially if this is Marian Hossa's first game for Chicago.

The Blackhawk I'd Like On My Team: Last time, I picked Duncan Keith and I'm sticking with it. However, I wouldn't like his rumored 13-year contract extension. Yikes!

Prediction: Sharks 5, Blackhawks 4. Goals by Marleau (2), Heatley, Pavelski, and Nichol.