The San Jose Sharks are one of the most popular teams in the The Shark's franchise began in the spring of 1990. When the NHL approved of George and Gordon Gund to sell the Minnesota North Stars to Dallas. In return for the rights to an expansion team in San Jose to began play in the 1991-1992 season. On July 30, 1990 there was a "Name the Team" sweepstakes that drew over 5, 700 entries from all over the world. The winner received tickets to the '92 All-star Game. On September 6, 1990 the team announced the new name of the team and they would be known as the "San Jose Sharks." The first two seasons of the Sharks were to be played at the Cow Palace in San Francisco until the San Jose Arena completed construction.
In the NHL entry draft the San Jose Sharks selected there first ever player. They selected 2 nd overall pick, Pat Falloon. Then they selected their 34 man roster through the dispersal and expansion draft. In there first game at Vancouver they lost 4-3.
The first goal in franchise history was scored by Craig Coxe at 4: 09 of the third period. The first win in history came at the Cow Palace, in a 4-3 win over the Calgary Flames. Later that month the Sharks get there first road victory in Calgary against the Flames, 2-1. The mascot was named " S. J. Sharpie", in his first game appearance, he bun gee jumped from the ceiling of the Cow Palace.
The Sharks had the worst record in the NHL with 17 wins in 78 games. After the season was over goalie Jeff Hackett was named the team's MVP, Pat Falloon had the most points for the team with 62, and Doug Wilson was named Captain and the first Shark ever to be named to an All- Star Game. In 1993-1994 the San Jose Sharks shocked the world with the kind of season they had. The Sharks had the biggest turnaround in NHL history. The season before the Sharks had the worst record in history with only 11 wins.
The '93-'94 season was a different story though the Sharks had a 5 point differential and they had 33 wins, best in franchise history. The amazing season was lead by goalie, Arthurs Irbe. Irbe, who was the goalie who recorded the Shark's first ever shutout. Irbe, recorded a career best, 30 wins and established an NHL single-season record by recording 4, 412 minutes. He also appeared in a team record 74 games. Arthurs Irbe wasn't the only ingredient to the Sharks first ever success story.
Sandis Ozolinsh, Igor Larionov, Sergei Makorov and rookie coach, Kevin Constantine also had a piece of the pie. Ozolinsh was 4 th in the league in defense man scoring, Larionov was 2 nd in assists, and Makorov was the first Shark ever to score 30 goals in a season. The Sharks clinched the playoffs with a 2-1 win over the LA Kings on, April 5, 1994. In the playoffs the shocked the world beating the heavily favored, Detroit Red Wings in 7 games. Then the Sharks faced the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 2 nd round. The Sharks were one goal away from beating them but the Leafs beat them in game six, then beat them in game 7 the win the series.
That season is said to be the best ever for the Sharks. The Sharks two greatest players of all time are on the teams roster right now. Those two players are Owen Nolan and Jeff Friesen. Owen Nolan, the captain, was traded to the Sharks for Sandis Ozolinsh from Colorado Avalanche in the 1996 season. Jeff Friesen, the Sharks all-time leading scorer, was obtained by the Sharks in the 1994 draft. He was the Shark's 1 st pick and 11 th overall.
Those two players led the Sharks to the playoffs last year for the 1 st time in two years. The Sharks fought the best team in the NHL in the playoffs last year. They faced the Dallas Stars. The Stars beat the Sharks in 6 games. Though the Sharks lost the series they didn't lose hope for next season. The Sharks started this season 0-6-1 the worst in franchise history.
Things looked dim for the Sharks until they stepped up their game to the next level. The Shark's youngsters, Patrick Marceau (19), Marco Sturm (20), and Alex Koroyuk (21), led the team after the all-star break. Thats when the Sharks became one of the hottest teams NHL. In February of '99 starting goalie, Mike Vernon pulled his groin and backup Steve Shields took the starting job. During the time Vernon was injured, Shields recorded a 10 game unbeaten streak and clinched the playoffs in a 1-0 win over the Phoenix Coyotes. The Sharks this season are 31-33-17 just enough for 7 th position in the playoffs.
The Sharks will face the Colorado Avalanche in the 1 st round. 31 c.