April 20, 2011



To wake up this morning in utter shock after watching the playoff highlights is an understatement. Living in the Eastern timezone makes watching the games on the west coast a little difficult every weeknight. Last night’s Sharks/Kings game in Los Angeles is one I wish I could have made it through. Part of what put me to sleep was the abysmal effort of the Sharks, and the especially horrid play of Anti Niemi. After the first period the Sharks were down 3-0 on only 9 shots against. Niemi had no chance on the third goal, but in the playoffs you have to be ready from the start. Not only was he not ready from the start of the game, he wasn’t ready for the start of the 2nd period.  Niemi allowed the first shot he faced in the second period after losing his stick. Coach Todd McLellan had enough of this performance and pulled Niemi, down 4-0, 0:44 into the second period, inserting Antero Nittymaki.

At 4-0, I decided it was time to shut it down for the night. The Sharks are not a team known for their heart, so there was no point in delaying the obvious.  Getting sleep on this lousy night of playoff action, will benefit me for the next night of playoff action with 5 games on tap.  The Sharks proved me, and almost everyone else wrong. Not only did they fight back to win the game, but they tied the game 5-5 before the end of the 2nd period! The game went to overtime after a scoreless 3rd period, where the Sharks would win for the second time this series.  This is one of those examples of what makes the NHL playoffs, the best action in sports. The loss will prove deflating for the Kings and an incredible boost for the Sharks. I never leave games early, just because you never know what might happen. Maybe I should apply this to watching games as well! Sleep is overrated any way!
Here is the schedule for today’s games.
Pittsburgh @ Tampa Bay  7:00pm
Washington @ NY Rangers  7:00pm
Philadelphia @ Buffalo  7:30
Anaheim @ Nashville  8:30pm
Detroit @ Phoenix  10:30pm
Catch my tweets tonight on the Flyers/Sabres and commentary about the other games  at twitter.com @getrealhockey.

Follow my articles and tweets on twitter @Chyz1.

-Mark Chyz

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