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After one day off for Thanksgiving (though practice was still held), the Sharks are resume playing with the first half of back-to-backs. This isn't a standard road game, however; tonight marks the first time the Sharks face the expansion Vegas Golden Knights in the regular season. Not only that, but in Las Vegas.
While most NHL teams have ties to the Golden Knights via the expansion draft held over the offseason, the Sharks have zero player ties to the organization - David Schlemko, the player drafted from the Sharks, was traded to the Montreal Canadiens almost immediately afterwards.
The Golden Knights, unlike the Sharks in their expansion years, have been faring well, leading the Pacific Division. However, luck has been on their side; they own a 1013 SPSv%, whereas the Sharks have a decidedly unlucky 978. Vegas has also been a higher-scoring team; while they rank 6th in goals, the Sharks rank 31st. However, the Sharks have also allowed the fewest goals against - showing that their defense is key to winning tonight's matchup.
Read the latest on the San Jose Sharks from the Mercury News.
With no morning skate due to the afternoon start time, it's much harder to pick up on what the Sharks lines are for tonight. However, prior to the game, head coach Peter DeBoer stated that Jannik Hansen will be in for Kevin Labanc tonight, and Martin Jones will start in goal.