The First Night
Throughout his 15-year career, especially during his years in Edmonton and Dallas, Bill Guerin always played in front of a vocal and perhaps ornery crowd in San Jose.
On Wednesday night, the four-time National Hockey League All-Star was wearing the home teal of the San Jose Sharks. Things will now be different.
“Even coming in here as an opposing player, you love the atmosphere. It’s great,” Guerin said. “It’s good to see all of the people in the stands enjoying the game.”
The 36-year-old made his Sharks debut against Nashville following a trade with St. Louis on Tuesday. In 20:30, Guerin didn’t score a point, but had three shots in the first two periods.
“I didn’t have my best game,” Guerin said.
While Guerin wasn’t happy with his performance, he likes playing with his new team.
“I liked the way our team played. It was a good effort,” he said. “We have a lot of good talent on this team. Guys played hard and physical. We have great depth.”
Depth and personnel have also caused Guerin to play the left wing, not his usual right wing position. Upcoming practices and the three-game road trip starting Friday in Anaheim will help him adjust to covering a different point on defense and being in a different position to start breakouts.
“The most important adjustment is defensively,” Guerin said. “That’s something you have to pay a little more attention to. That will all come in time. Offensively, you just play the game.”
THE BIG THREE
San Jose starts a big three-game road trip Friday night in Anaheim. San Jose outplayed the Ducks on Monday night, but lost a one-goal game at HP Pavilion. Dallas will be the next stop on Sunday afternoon. The teams last played on Feb. 18 in Dallas and the Stars won, 5-2.
And Tuesday’s game in Minnesota is important for playoff positioning. The eighth place Wild trail the sixth place Sharks in the Western Conference by two points.
“It’s been playoff hockey the last couple of games. We have to keep getting better and taking steps forward,” Kyle McLaren said.
San Jose had two home games to gain some ground. But all they could muster was one point. It’s frustrating, but the Sharks have to keep thinking ahead.
“It would’ve been nice to get some points on this short homestand, but we have to improve on the road,” McLaren said. “These next few games will be a big test.”