Which current Sharks player is the most deserving of our scorn and why?
Patrick Marleau. His regular season performance always gets your hopes up that they will be a respectable opponent. He makes you think he’s going to be formidable in the post season, so you start unreasonably fearing the Shark logo. All the TV analysts hop onto the Shark bandwagon and give them the "dark horse" or "X-factor" label. But then after the first game in Round 1, we all realize it’s Patrick Marleau. We giggle and then look at the bracket to see which team will actually emerge from the Western Conference.
What about the Sharks past: What's the most annoying moment in their history from your perspective?
Nothing from a results perspective. The only thing that’s a little bit nagging is that they at one point had J. Thorton, Heatley, Boyle, Marleau, Couture, Pavelski, Murray, Niemi, et. al. On paper, that team actually looks pretty good and you’d think they’d win something. I guess we’re all just a bit annoyed that they have still yet to do anything. Even as a fan of a Pacific rival, I have to admit I’m a little perturbed at their performances. I guess I always expected them to be somewhat threatening. I know that personally (even as a fan of a rival) I root for them because you just have to root for Rudy.
Why is their style of play The Worst Thing To Ever Happen to Hockey?
It isn’t. I love the Sharks’s style of play. It’s kind of like playing a video game against someone who you know is pretty good but clearly not as good as you are. They can always keep the game somewhat close, but you end up winning every time. It’s one of the most enjoyable ways to play a game, because you know it’s going to be entertaining but you never actually have to taste defeat.
I wish we got to play against the Sharks 82 games a year. That way we’d win the Presidents’ Trophy every year. Is it even possible to win 82 games in a row?
How about San Jose. What's the biggest reason that San Jose and California suck? Is it a fun place to take in a road game?
Every other block in San Jose is beautiful with absolutely gorgeous lines of $20M 1 bed, 1 bath, 600 sq ft mansions. Owners of these impressive houses all drive opulent Toyota compacts, which is quite breathtaking for visitors who are only used to seeing European luxury cars and top of the line SUVs. All adjacent blocks are ghetto and rundown. And it’s all connected by the terribly congested and smog-heavy highway. So as long as you travel on the nice blocks, it’s a scenic place.
The arena is nice, it’s often empty with plenty of seats and elbow room. It’s comfortable, the home team fans are few and far between. They’re usually pretty polite young professionals attending their first game. Generally speaking, they’re very inquisitive intellectuals and ask questions such as: Which team is the Sharks? How do you keep score? How do you see the puck? Some of them even claim to have come up with a brilliant, completely innovative app idea of highlighting the puck on the TV, smartphone, and iPad screens so you can track the action better. One guy sitting behind us overheard this idea and immediately told us that he’s a big VC in the area and would commit the California state teacher’s pension to this disruptive, world-changing startup. So it’s not only a place to take in a great game, but it’s a place where real business gets done.
Sharks fans: idiots or fun drinking buddies? How are they when they show up in your building? DO they show up in your building?
Sharks fans are great to drink with. Of the 9 fans who actually watch hockey regularly, one word best describes everyone’s relationship with them: shadenfreude. I know that when my team gets destroyed, even by the Florida Panthers, I can always look at the poor Sharks fan and think to myself at least we’re not them.
I will say this though: true Sharks fans who actually watch hockey tend to be pretty knowledgeable about other teams. It’s really rare to see fans with such pessimistic self-imagery that they too assume that their team is going to get eliminated early every April, so by default they’ve already figured out which non-Shark team to root for next and have said roster memorized.
Among the rest of the fans, it’s kind of like drinking with your non-hockey friends. They just look at you as that guy who watches hockey. Deep down, they’re all hoping that hockey isn’t brought up in conversation so that they’re not forced to talk about a topic they’re not familiar with. It’s funny when you do bring it up though, ‘cause I always get a good chuckle when I hear them pronounce Jaromir Jagr’s name similar to Mick Jagger’s.
Lastly, what would you say is the single biggest reason to hate the San Jose Sharks?
I really just don’t think there’s any reason to hate the Sharks at all. They’re like your little cousin or family friend who looks up to you but knows deep down they’ll never be able to follow in your footsteps. Here’s a great analogy: if you are in culinary school training to be a hotel chef, they’re the ones dressed in their full uniforms with apron, hat, knife belt, the whole works; they really look the part and border on over-prepared, if you know what I mean. They tell you how good your knife skills are when you prep and you feel grateful and appreciative for their comments so you try and get them involved. You ask them to help cut an onion, but they’re left crying with onion fumes sizzling their eyes and give up after just peeling the skin back. You can’t be mad. At least you tried to share in the experience and get them involved, but it just wasn’t going to work. It’s ok. You give them a pat on the back and hand ‘em a beer.