The Sharks reached the playoffs for the first time in nine seasons last season and they had their fair share of adversity in that span.
The team got off to a hot start but had to wait until the final week of the season to face off against the Calgary Flames, who they had to beat 3-2 in regulation in a game in Calgary that had a huge impact on how the Sharks played their game.
The Sharks, though, were never in the same position they were in the previous season, when they were a top-four team, and had a much stronger record than this year’s Sharks, who are still a bottom-six team.
The game started off in a pretty standard fashion for a team that is in its second year in the league, with the Sharks winning the first period, but it quickly turned into a shootout.
The first two periods were a shootout and the Sharks led 4-2 at the 1:50 mark of the first, but the Flames took the lead in the third and got one back in the fourth period.
The third period saw the Sharks start to play a little more conservative, which they did for the majority of the period.
They scored two goals in the first and two in the second, but were unable to get any more of the momentum in the game.
It looked like they were headed into the fourth, but they couldn’t find the net until they were down 3-1 at the 17:20 mark.
They had a chance to tie the game at one when the Sharks were able to score three unanswered goals on the power play to even the score at 3-3.
The Flames would tie the score again at 4-3, but that was after a few sloppy penalties that saw two players get sent to the box, and then the Sharks would get a power play goal to tie it up at 5-4.
The Stars scored two more goals in that period, and the score was 3-4 on a goal from Johnny Oduya and a goal by Brett Ritchie.
The next time the Sharks faced the Flames, the Stars would tie it at 5.2, but a late power play tally from Jamie Benn and a penalty shot from Cody Eakin saw the Stars lead 4-5 at the 3:49 mark of that period.
After the game, Sharks head coach Darryl Sutter said the team wanted to get back on track.
“It was an amazing opportunity for us to go to Edmonton and play in the playoffs and get back in that mix and compete,” Sutter told the team website.
“It was a little frustrating in that game, because we were ahead by a lot, and we were behind by a little bit.
But the fact that we got a chance in Edmonton to play in that series was really cool.”
The Sharks will take on the Calgary Canadiens in Game 1 of their first-round series Wednesday at 7 p.m. (Pacific).