SAN JOSE – The San Jose Sharks are making plans to commemorate their 20th anniversary as an NHL franchise throughout the upcoming 2010-11 season. Granted an NHL franchise on May 9, 1990, the Sharks played their first game on Oct. 4, 1991, falling 4-3 at Vancouver. In 2010, San Jose will open their 20th year as an NHL franchise with back-to-back games against the Columbus Blue Jackets in Stockholm, Sweden on Oct. 8 and 9.
In conjunction with the milestone, the team has designed several special 20th anniversary marks that will be used in various locations – including the center ice logo at HP Pavilion for all home games and on sjsharks.com – as well as released a patch that will be donned on the team’s game sweaters and helmets.
All season long, the team will wear a 20th Anniversary San Jose Sharks patch on their sweater that will be placed on the left sleeve underneath the player’s number and above the stripe. The patch, which is 5¼” x 1¾”, combines the modern Shark with a powerful “double-XX” design, using the Roman numeral for the number “20” celebrating the team’s anniversary. This patch will also be placed on each player’s helmet.
All of the 20th anniversary artwork was created by Terry Smith, who also designed the team’s original logo, as well as the updated team marks that were introduced prior to the 2007-08 season.
Additional plans to commemorate the team’s 20th anniversary on- and off-the-ice will be announced throughout the summer.
Since entering the NHL in 1991-92, the Sharks have made the Stanley Cup Playoffs 13 times and their 24 playoff series played during that time are tied for the seventh-most out of any NHL franchise. Over the past 12 seasons, the Sharks have 11 postseason appearances including one Presidents’ Trophy, two Western Conference Regular Season Championships, five Pacific Division Championships and two appearances in the Western Conference Final. Since 2003-04, the Sharks are one of only three teams to make the postseason in each season and their 13 playoff series played in that time span are second-most in the NHL, behind only the Detroit Red Wings.
Upon their inception, the Sharks played their first two seasons at the Cow Palace in Daly City, just south of San Francisco. The team moved to HP Pavilion at San Jose (then San Jose Arena) for the start of the 1993-94 season. Since moving to HP Pavilion, nearly 11 million (10,954,414) fans have attended 638 regular season games. In 2009-10, the Sharks total attendance marked a franchise-high, with 719,904 fans attending the team’s 41 regular season games.
“Fans all over the Bay Area have embraced this franchise and its players from Day One,” stated President and Chief Executive Officer of Silicon Valley Sports & Entertainment Greg Jamison. “As the cornerstone of an immense downtown redevelopment project that began more than 20 years ago, our organization and HP Pavilion have grown up alongside San Jose and become truly engrained in the fabric of our community.
“As we look back with great pride over the team’s first 20 seasons, we keep one eye securely focused on the next 20 as we continue to strive towards our goal of bringing a Stanley Cup Championship to the Bay Area.”
The Sharks will be releasing a line of 20th Anniversary merchandise on Tues., July 6 that will be exclusively available at the Sharks Store. Sharks Store summer hours are 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday.