Tuesday, June 30, 2009

First freakout this free agency season

Pollak has the scoop. I am going to be EXTREMELY sad if Boucher is gone tomorrow.

Grier, sir. We pretty much knew this day was coming, but it's a sad day indeed. You were awesome. Good luck.

Technical Difficulties

Power's been off and on all morning. Updates on players, moves, etc, if they come today, will be sporadic at best and non existent at worst.


Luckily, nothing huge went down today. Makes sense since the first is tomorrow. All the big splashes the Sharks may or may not make are more likely to hit then. Hopefully Gray will have reliable power tomorrow so as to provide you with coverage of all the day's events (or lack there of).

Working the Corners gives a more in depth reason for it being all quiet on the teal front.

Only thing in there that piques my interest is the Flyers potentially interested in getting Boosh back.

One thing of note: Joe Pa was invited to Team USA's Olympic camp. Whooo! Go Joe Pa!

And now, Gray is off to try and get some artwork done for tomorrow. Study all day, draw all night. And all with a cold. Don't say we don't love our readers.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Blake Back In Da'House

Working the Corners has the early (or late) down low on the dealio.

(h/t to swisherthreser at FTF)

Analysis/reaction to come tomorrow.

Player News

And Update from David Pollak of Working the Corners has several sharks receiving qualifying offers, while others have been left high and dry.

More as it develops.

Update [3:26pm]:

More on those who did and did not receive QOs today from the sharks official site and Mr. Pollak.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Potential Moves and the Danger of Disappointment

Change is coming, according to Pollak's chat with DW. But how much?

Are 6 to 8 roster moved enough to satisfy the angry cries rising up from some in the disgruntled San Jose fan base? It likely depends on what those changes are.

Unlike a lot of fans, I neither expect nor want to see Wilson blow up the team. I realize it's probably time for some players to go, (most Sharks fans I know agreeing that the time left in teal may be short for Cheech and Grier), but is it time to blow the team up?

One of the changes I consider possible, and large, though likely not large enough for many, is a changing of the leadership group. No, I'm not trying to toss Patty under the bus. I'm a big support of our current Captain, and if he keeps the C, I won't be surprised or concerned. However, I can see moving the letters about a bit to rewards those who showed pretty great leadership on the ice in that disastrous first round series against the Ducks. Ignoring Patty playing with a torn MCL for the moment (hello, leadership), Boyle and Palveski are pretty good picks if one if looking to toss some As around. JR has been a great motivator for the team, maybe give him a LM and make him the official team loud mouth. (I mean that in the best of ways, honestly. Love JR) I know, that's not an official thing, but still. If they don't have a life size cut out of him they are stripping naked with every win in the locker room, they should.*

Team motivation is what really needs to change. Beyond the players and their issues on the ice, there is clearly a lack of something within the organization. Some driving force. (No, no heart. They have that in spades as far as I am concerned.) Changes to the bench obviously influenced the team positively, but there's still something lacking within the team's core. I'm not sure how explosive moves in the locker room would aid/hinder that particular fix. Only time will tell.

I have a feeling that no matter what Wilson chooses to do in the remainder of the off season, it won't be enough for some. Some people won't be happy unless he ships out everyone minus Boyle. Personally, I'd be ok with a minimalist approach. A surgical strike on the roster, if you will. Oly fix what you know is broken. Leave the rest and see how it knits itself back together.

*Major League reference for those who don't waste as much of their time on pop culture as I do/did.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Worst Recap Ever

Mina and I did watch the draft yesterday, and she watched some of it today. Normally this would mean we'd have an amusing, though not necessarily in depth recap of the day's events for you, but Gray is feeling the full effects of her cold at the moment, and isn't really into typing things the require deeper levels of thinking. So, for now, we leave you with the following links to browse and our apologise at dropping the ball. You may want to wash it if you pick it up. It's got cooties.

Puck Daddy

Lame, we know, but it's better than not posting at all.

Friday, June 26, 2009

The Best Laid Plans. Draft Day 2009

There's supposed to be art for this. It's sitting in my sketch book waiting to be scanned and completed. The Tarts are also supposed to be having a dorky little draft day party, which is made even more dorky by the fact that the Sharks don't pick until the second round. Both those things may still occur, but Gray caught a dumb cold, so the art may be considerably later than it should be and our recap may be a list of links. (or with how Gray feels, there may not be any art at all. Sorry)

Enjoy your draft day, ladies and gentlemen.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Our favorite beat guy, David Pollak, has some news about Clowe and Grier, and they possibilities of them staying with the team this coming season. Judging by the tone of the post, Clowe has a better shot then Grier, but who knows what's going to happen after the draft is done. I really like that Grier said he wanted it finish his career here. That really proves how good the Sharks organization is.
I'm also very happy that Clowe wants to resign. Clowe watch will hopefully not be in effect this summer.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Greatest Thing I Have Seen This Week

This is so magical. I can't stop watching and doing my own terrible breed of white girl dancing. Your life will be better just by watching this. Seriously.

Monday, June 22, 2009

The Waiting Game

No real news to report on the Teal front. We're still waiting to see what JR decides (please come back), who's getting the boot and who's getting resigned. Draft day should prove to be interesting. DW plays his cards close, but we have to guess he'll be doing at least some wheeling and dealing.

To help fill the void, some of us will be heading to the A's v Giants game tonight. It's not hockey, but it is a good distraction while we all wait for the draft and free agency freak out. (although this year, I suspect the freak out will be centered around GMs realizing they can't sign anyone and the fans going into a panic because of this)

Friday, June 19, 2009

We Came, We Saw, We Didn't Fall Asleep

Despite our better judgement, Mina and I turned into the revamped NHL Awards yesterday, expecting long hours of folksy humor, kids in misspelled jerseys, and general coma inducing pacing that causes one to fall into a deep and terrible boredom.

I came away from the awards last year, (which we only watched to see who won the Vezina), feeling that the NHL had, perhaps, one of the lowest rent award shows in the history of professional sports. While I respected the attempts to stay warm, small town, family oriented, in what is a close knit sport, it made for bad TV. It felt like you watched all day just to get to one award. It wasn't pretty.

Pleasantly, Vegas seems to have offered the NHL a chance to become higher rent, and to eliminate some of the awkwardness that comes from having a host set the pace of the show. (see: Academy Awards/Oscars) JR was on stage so often, one could say he was a host of sorts, but he was also largely confined to the teleprompter and only ad libbed occasionally. (Would you expect anything less from one of the most outspoken players in the league?)

Mina and I could have also dealt without the musical interludes...especially the one "dedicated" to the fans. Thankfully, those were the only large speed bumps in a well paced, if not somewhat choppy and abruptly ending, road.

In terms of who won, there were no surprises. Luongo won some new fan award, which caused the crowd to shout something at him. It could have been "Looooooouuuuuuuu" or "booooooooooooooo", I'm not sure which. A full list of all the winners, as well as the first and second all-star teams can be found at the NYTimes Slap Shot Blog (and various other locations I'm not linking to).

So congrats to the NHL for managing to put together an awards show that didn't make the fans, both in the building and at home, want to stab their televisions. No idea how the players felt about the ordeal, but I doubt they were complaining about a few days in Vegas.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Meet Afropuff!

Hello there, it's Afropuff, your newest tart blogger! Mina & Gray have been pressuring me to add to their already wonderful blog but I figured I should wait until after the playoffs. Before we start cheering, crying, and cussing at the Sharks together, I thought I'd let you know a few things about me:

  • I love the Sharks…but I haven't always. gasp I fell in love with hockey while I was in college (in Baltimore), so the closest NHL team was the Washington Capitals. It didn’t hurt that they were absolutely amazing that year. That was back when they had Oates, Bondra, Gonchar , Kolzig, etc. They went to the Stanley Cup finals that year (we don't need to discuss the ending of that story) and hockey has been an important element of my life ever since
  • I played 2 seasons as a goalie in the NCWHL (if you are a female interested in playing ice hockey, look them up - they are a great organization. Go here for more info - ncwhl.com) Even though I only played for a couple of years, I continue to feel strongly about that position. For example, I don't believe in chanting the opposing goalies name if he's not doing well because I think it's one of hardest positions to play (mentally, physically & emotionally.)
  • I am a woman and a hockey fan. I strongly believe that you can appreciate a hockey player's skill on the ice and think they're cute. You don’t have to be either a hockey fan or a puck bunny – you can be a mixture of both!
  • I am a woman of color and a hockey fan. Call it affirmative action, reparations, reverse racism or whatever you wish, but I will always cheer a little harder for Grier, Seto, Cheech, and Joslin. I’ll even cheer for Iginla, Weekes, Brashear…

We have a fun summer ahead of us and I am so excited to be a member of the Couch Tarts family!

*editors note: we're still getting Afro set up, so Gray may be posting her articles until she's fully settled.

To Watch Or Not To Watch

The NHL Awards are tomorrow. For those of us south of the Canadian border lands, Versus will be covering all the fun come 4:30 pm.

Gray watched last year and was nearly bored to tears. The folksy hockey humor attempted by the host (I am sorry I don't know his name. Last year was the first year I watched the awards), didn't really seems to go over well and the entire show felt awkward and a little too self aware, while trying to remain somewhat kitschy. It was also very much not funny.

And yet...

There is some draw. Not much, but some.

Unlike last year, no Sharks are up for an award save McLellan. (and I swear we already know who won that award...) It's more that there is some morbid interest in seeing how bad a train wreck the show is and if Vegas offers it any spice. Combine that with the amazing lack of work Gray has at the moment, and she probably will, once again, succumb to dark desires to witness a televised disaster and tune in. Besides, I think I read JR might be there and maybe he'll mix it up.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Update on Richards to Wild

Pollak has the scoop.

The Sharks official response can be found here.

I wanted to come up with something poignant to write about our dearly departed coach, but I realized I don't really know any of the men behind the bench well enough, save for perhaps McLellan, to opine such an offering.

The only thing that came to mind worth sharing was how awkward it must sometimes be for coaches, given how incestuousness the league is. Obviously, 9 times out of 10, these guys know it isn't personal and behave like the adults they are, but when it gets heated, how long does it stay awkward between old friends? Once you have flown over the glass at you opposing coach, I have to think your relationship would become a tad strained.

This is not to say that I think McLellan would launch himself at a former staff mate. Far from it. RW on the other hand....

On a lighter note: Think Ricci will be behind the bench this coming season? Only time will tell.

The Sharks Summer Clearance sale starts today for all you lucky season ticket holders. My fellow mortals and I can attend starting Thursday. Leave some good stuff for us, will ya?

Monday, June 15, 2009

Better Late Than Never, as Cheech (Marin) Would Say

Congrats to the 2009 Stanley Cup Champs: The Pittsburgh Penguins.

No, I don't think the Pens are fat. I just wanted a Penguin that looked like a bowling pin.

I watched a bit of the parade this morning and was pleased, though also somewhat disappointed, to see the Malkin was not following Zetterberg's example and using the Conn Smythe trophy as a hat.

Farewell, Todd Richards. We Hardly Knew Ye

According to various spots around teh interwebs, Sharks Asst. Coach Todd Richards will now be captaining the ship over on the Minnesota Wild's ocean.

Farewell sir. We here at Couch Tarts wish you all the best, except when your team faces the Sharks. We're honest, even in business.

H/T to Swisher Thresher again

Pollak has your official update. He is the man.


According to Bleacher Report, Blake has resigned with the Sharks for two years at 4.5mil. H/T to FTF's Swisher Threasher and TCY

HOWEVER! Gray has yet to find this article substantiated anywhere else, so don't freak out, become jubilant, etc, just yet. Until we have proof, much like Pronger to the Kings, this is just a rumor.

We love hockey rumors as much as the next fan, so we will do our best to keep you up to date on all the things that probably haven't happened during the off season.


Pollak says NO to this rumor. Well, parts of it.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

News and Things

So some jerk tried to steal from me today as I was enjoying my workout at the gym. He didn't get anything but I'm pretty pissed off and it's making drawing impossible. So I have some links for you instead.

Who wants to let Gray pretend she's a season ticket holder on the 16th?

Looking at the UFA/RFA players on the Sharks in the sterile way only sjsharks.com can.

JR to receive a very important award! Sadly it probably doesn't come in lamp form.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Game 7

Today @ 5pm
Series tied at 3 a piece
This one's for all the marbles

This is the last game day of the season. In a little under 12 hours from now, the game begins. A SCF game 7 is like nothing else is sports. Set your brains to roller coaster and enjoy the ride.

Post Game Update:

PENS WIN! Whooooooooooooo Congrats ot the Pens and their fans!

Congrats on a very well played series and playoffs to the Wings!

Post Dinner Post Game Recap:

Whoooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo, that was one hell of a ride. I thought I was going to lose it a few times, and it wasn't even the Sharks that were playing! I pretty much tossed ever piece of bad news and stress that had come my way in the past few days into this game and rode the games highs and lows like it was my own team out there in place of the Pens. It was such a roller coaster. I have no idea how anyone who's a "eal" fan of either team gets through a game 7 in the SCF, aside from maybe a liberal use of booze. I felt an amazing amount of relief once the game was over. There is really nothing like a SCF game 7 in any other sport. Nothing.

Malkin wins the Conn Smythe, and doesn't drop it. I pretty much always expect someone to drop the trophies. I don't know why. He looked so happy. I was very happy for him.

I'll try to get some Penguins with Cup art busted out to ya all this weekend. We'll be following all the rumors and news we can find over the summer,, so stick with us.

2008-2009 has been one hell of a season.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Draw the Sharks: Crankshaft

This actually started out as part of a comic I was working on for Diamondback, but for some reason, it just wasn't clicking. I liked the Doug Murray I had drawn for the first pannel, so I decided to salvage him. Here he is, in all his digitally colored glory.

The summer is long, so I might do a few more of these to fill the hockey void.

If you're the owner of an image I use as reference, no worries,these aren't for sale. I will do my best to credit the original owner of the images.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

When A Sharkspage Rosterbates, People Listen

Some good stuff regarding the Sharks current roster and possible changes for next season

DW, seriously. KEEP CLOWE! And Patty, but really...CLOWE!

*Internet bonus points to anyone who gets that old commercial reference.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Is This The End?

Tonight @ 5pm
Wings lead series 3-2

We all know how this game went last year. In the dark recesses of my mind, this fact was churning, causing me to dream about tonight's game.

In my dream, at first it seems like the Wings had won. I was annoyed. But then, it was discovered that the game had yet to happen. What I had seen of the Wings skating around the ice with the Cup was imagined. The game had yet to be played. As I compared some odd seals representing each of the two teams, I awoke. I have no idea what this means, other than I apparently have too much hockey on the brain.

Post Game Recap:

Holy effing poop popsicles on a stick. That was a GAME.

Games 1 and 2 were made up for with game 6.


Tivo'd it? watch this game. Holy crap.

Save by Scuderi was sick.

MAF was amazing. Osgood was good too, but MAF needed it more.

Pens were all over the place. The Wings had nothing until the third.

The third was nuts. Everything the third period in a game 6 of the finals should be.

Some tricky penalties, but only a few for both sides. This game flowed.

@wilw sums it up best: Two post-game six thoughts: 1. Wow that whole game was a freakin' highlight reel. 2. I can't wait for game seven.


Game 7 here we come!

They aren't the Sharks, but I can still dig it. Go Pens!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

All the News That We Deem Important

Things here in Tartsville have settle down a bit, so we figured it'd be a good time to brief you on all the Sharks news we missed this week.

Equipment sale was yesterday. For those of you who like buying smelly old socks and framing them. Hope you all had a good time.

The Ehrhoffs welcomed their new baby daughter to the world, then flew back to Germany with her. Congrats to the family! And double congrats for surviving all those flights with a newborn.

Looking for a reason to hit Vegas this summer? JR will be there. That's reason enough to go just about anywhere.Considering who's playing, it could be quite a show. I'd rather have tickets to this then the NHL Snore Awards.

WTC had an update on some Marleau rumors a few days back.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

SCF, Day 5, Game 5

Today @ 5pm (how steadily scheduled)
Series is tied at 2 a piece
pining for the big screen

May or may not be home for this one. RL occasionally interferes with hockey watching. One thing we can all be sure of, however, is that one team will win tonight and one team will lose.

Book it.

Post Game Recap:

That was awful. I got home in time to the second and third and I kind of wished our dinner plans had not fallen through because that was painful to watch. Wow in a bad way. I'd like to see this go 7. Go Pens.

Moving on to better things, here's an article I found on digg that talks about whether or not scoring the first goal in game has any impact on who wins. I'll give you a hint, it dpends on who you ask and what games you look at.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

SCF, Day 4, Game 4

Today @ 5pm
Wings lead series 2-1

The good ladies at HLOG will be live blogging tonight's game. Please stop by and join us if you can.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

SCF, Day 3, Game 3

Today @ 5pm
Wings lead 2-0

Post Game Recap:

Until they talk to Tavares for 5 seconds, this game was all about TOO MANY MEN ON THE ICE!

I'm sure that's a big conspiracy theory today, but I am confident that occasionally people just can't count. How many times have you had to recount heads when out with a group for dinner? Yeah. Like that. It was funny, and it was obviously a penalty that should have been called, but it wasn't. Moving on.

That interview was...over very quickly. They asked him if he was ready to assume a leadership roll like Crosby had. Like he's going to say "no, I don't want to take on a leadership role. I kinda want to suck for a few years." Not going to happen, but I suppose they have to ask him something, so might as well lob a pre-approved softball.

This game was much more of what I had been looking for in terms of pace and battles. Both teams actually seemed to realize they were playing for something special last night. The last five minutes of this game was CRAZY! Loved it.