The 2020/21 season starts soon. Let’s have a look at what happened in the team last year and what we can look forward to in the new season. The 2019/20 season was affected by injuries, unstable performance and suspension due to global COVID-19 pandemic. For all fans, the last season was definitely a disappointment. We could even say that it was one of the worst seasons since 1996-97. The only positive thing were penalty kills, where Sharks were the best team in the league. Sharks finished the season as the 15th and last team in the Western Conference with 63 points in 70 games with a 182:226 score. Compared to the 2018-19 season, there was a drop in scored goals (2018-19 3.52 goals per game on average, 2019-20 2.6 goals per game). It is clear that Sharks didn’t cope well with the loss of Pavelski, Donskoi and Nyquist. The offensive was joined by 8 new players (Joel Kellman, Dylan Gambrell, Noah Gregor, Alexander True, Maxim Letunov, Lean Bergmann, Joachim Blichfeld, Danil Yurtaykin), but none of them managed to take a stable place in the Sharks team.
What does 2020/21 season hold for San Jose Sharks? Sharks enter the new season recovered from all injuries, relaxed after 10 months without hockey and hungry to demonstrate that the suspended 2019-20 season was just a glitch and not a true portrayal of the team’s power. Sharks still have a great potential to rank among the top teams in the regular season. Some players showed their skills on loans in Europe, so the team management has definitely many inputs to eliminate last season’s weaknesses and fine-tune the line-up for the next season to fight for the play-offs. The new season will also tell us how the new arrivals from Minnesota (Dubnyk, Donato) will fit in and whether speculations on Brent Burns’ departure to Seattle Kraken are true. It will also be interesting to watch Patrick Marleau’s efforts to dethrone Gordie Howe in the number of games played. Patrick only needs 45 games to do that. NHL experts say that it’s extremely difficult to predict the 2020/21 season. Anything can happen. We all wish only one thing: to see Stanley Cup hoisted above San Jose Sharks’ heads for the first time in the history of NHL.