Sharks teams have gotten this far before, but I never thought they brought the grit(or had the grit?) that is the essence of hockey. BTW the grit that is the essence of hockey is Sustained Grit. I never wanted them to go overboard like the Calgary Flames of the Daryl Sutter era, but the Sharks lack of anything close to a 'never back down' heart has always been a source of head shaking and what if thinking and painful "C'mons" and "Don't pass it to the other teams."
The LA series seemed to confirm this. Maybe they were just playing to the level of the competition.
In the Detroit series, I feel they have played good gritty hockey, and I have been proud of being a Sharks fan. I'm not upset that they still have a ways to go, and that, their recent dominance of Detroit aside, they have found they are playing a better hockey team. At any time do you think we would have traded Thornton for Datsyuk? or Marleau for Zetterberg? Do you think Detroit would have?
Even so, the Sharks are playing with grit, they are just playing a grittier team, and we see what grit can do, what grit can do playing on one leg.
Win or lose tonight I'm proud oft the Sharks.
And I have to add that, even though improved, the Sharks D in simply inadequate for any team with serious Cup aspirations. This would have been over with serious D.