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The playoff run officially ended Monday night, ending 10 straight seasons that ended with a playoff berth. Normally you'd call that a fluke year, but that doesn't fit this time. This offseason is a crucial one for the future of the organization.
The Sharks are still mathematically alive in the playoff race, but they don't have time to catch up. This organization is not used to this kind of thing, missing the playoffs, but there's going to have to be some offseason soul searching to figure out what went wrong.
The Sharks hung around long enough to make it look like they would sneak into the playoffs. Not anymore. Their playoff streak will end after 10 straight seasons. Will they clean house?
The public spat between GM Doug Wilson and forward Joe Thornton, handled pretty much entirely through the media, was just another in a long line of weirdness from the Sharks this season. They still have a lot of ground to make up to have a shot at the postseason, too.
The Sharks showed they still have some fight with a spirited 2-1 shootout win over Pittsburgh Monday. They're still alive in the playoff chase but aren't a particularly frightening team at this point.
The Sharks offloaded members of their bottom six for mid-round draft picks and bottom-sixer Ben Smith. The Sharks are possibly worse after the deadline than they were heading in, at least for this season. It's hard to figure what they're doing in general.
The loss to the Kings in the Stadium Series had to feel like a punch to the gut. The Sharks are out of the playoff picture right now by just one point. They've really struggled lately, though, and it will only get harder to recover.
The Sharks may be starting to feel pretty uncomfortable with the way the Pacific playoff race is tightening. They've lost 6 of 8 while divisional opponents gain ground.
I've said all year that the Sharks are kind of a mystifying team this season. Their consistency issues are well known, but they still look dangerous enough for divisional opponents to want to avoid in that first-round matchup.
The Sharks still have a pretty good hold onto second place in the Pacific Division, but consistency issues abound as evidenced by Monday's disappointing shootout loss to the lowly Oilers at home.
Preseason Power Rankings
No captain? No problem. The Sharks started with a big win over their biggest rival and kept right on rolling in their home opener, while their scoring attack remains potent.
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