Unlike the conclusion of their first round series with Colorado where there were four possible opponents to start thinking about, as the Sharks have moved on to the Western Conference Finals the potential rivals list contains just two names. Chicago and Vancouver.
Had Chicago won on home ice last night, the Blackhawks would have clinched the spot opposite San Jose, but as it is there will be a Game 6 in that series Tuesday night in Vancouver. Chicago still holds a 3-2 series lead and, if necessary, Game 7 would be on Thursday.
Dates for the Western Conference Finals cannot be announced until the matchups are set in both conferences, allowing television to decide which games they want to broadcast on specific dates.
There are plenty of ties to both organizations with whatever matchup should occur. Vancouver boasts former Sharks Christian Ehrhoff, Steve Bernier and Mikael Samuelsson. Chicago has Brian Campbell, while San Jose lists Trent Yawney as a member of the coaching staff. Yawney was a longtime member of the Blackhawks organization, serving as a player, assistant coach and head coach.