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NHL Power Rankings: Confounding Sharks riding a hot streak

by | Hockey writer

With Thanksgiving around the corner and the NHL reaching its quarter point, a lot of teams have a pretty good idea of where they need to go.

One team that remains incredibly difficult to read is the San Jose Sharks. This is probably not new, considering their bizarre 2014-15 season.

Still, the Sharks have had a confounding season. They started with four straight wins, then went 3-8-0 over their next 11. And they're coming off a road trip on which they won all six games. It was their first-ever road sweep of four or more games.

The trip did happen to feature Eastern Conference teams on less-than-inspiring starts, but any team that wins six games in nine days on the road did a lot of things right. So how good are the Sharks?

While that answer remains relatively unclear, the trip has them tied atop the Pacific Division with the Los Angeles Kings, and sixth overall in the NHL.

Goalie Martin Jones, who has been up and down in his first season as a starter, is 11-5-0 with a .929 save percentage. Captain Joe Pavelski just keeps scoring with 12 goals and 20 points. Defenseman Brent Burns has been one of the league's top-producing blueliners with eight goals and 17 points. New addition Joel Ward has 17 points, too. Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau continue to produce. Meanwhile, Logan Couture has been out since the third game.

The reality: The Sharks are somewhere between the team that just won all six of its games on the road and the one that went 3-8. They have enough firepower to get through the shallow Pacific Division and reach the playoffs, and we all know the story there. Still, what they just did warrants attention and they've given all of us a reason to keep a close eye on what they do next.


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