As one of the youngest teams in the league, the Sharks have managed to make quite a name for themselves in their short tenure. With several playoff appearances marked by an impressive ability to beat the top seed team (only to fall in round two), their popularity is completely understandable.
Arena: SAP Center
AHL Affiliate: San Jose Barracuda
Owner: San Jose Sports & Entertainment Enterprises
Coach: Peter DeBoer
Notable Former Players: Sergei Makarov, Igor Larionov, Doug Wilson
Current Captain: Joe Pavelski
Goalies: Martin Jones
Notable Current Players: Joe Thornton, Logan Couture, Brent Burns, Joel Ward, Patrick Marleau
Gordon and George Gund wanted to bring a team back to the Bay, after having been part of the decision to move the California Golden Seals to Cleveland and then have them merge with the Minnesota North Stars, so the League told them they could have the expansion team if they sold their share of the North Stars to Hartford Whalers owner Howard Baldwin, who was looking to get a team into San Jose.
The first choice name for the new team was ‘San Jose Blades’ but the potential negative connotation to weapons lead the Gund brothers to go with the second choice of ‘Sharks’ instead. The name was reportedly inspired by the number of sharks living in the Pacific…. Who would have guessed?
The Sharks played their first two seasons in ‘Cow Palace’.
Despite their struggles to win, in their second season they sold the most merchandise for the NHL teams which accounted for nearly thirty percent of the League’s total revenue.
In their third season, they made a record 58 point jump in the standings from their last season to make the playoffs for the first time with 82 points.
1995 saw the only ever rain-out in NHL history when the rain in California flooded the Guadalupe River in March, making it impossible for fans to get to the arena to see the Sharks play the Red Wings.
Despite their many appearances in the playoffs, they have only managed to advance to the Stanley Cup Finals once where they lost to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Patrick Marleau and his family adopted Jo Pawvelski, the stray cat that ran across the ice during the playoffs.