The San Jose Sharks' fall from grace continues, as the losing streak was extended to seven games (0-4-3) on Friday night with a 4-1 defeat in Chicago. Scoring just seven goals in those losses, the Sharks have dropped from the top spot in the Pacific division to No. 6 in the West; with three games remaining on the current road trip, including another stop in Chicago, San Jose is in danger of possibly falling far out of a playoff spot sooner than later.
There doesn't seem to be any sign of the struggles ending, either. With the Sharks offense sputtering and the power play completely ineffective, coach Todd McLellan hinted that changes could be coming if things don't quickly change,.
"I think everybody needs to be concerned about the performance of the team - players, managers, we're all in it together," McLellan said. "When you start pointing fingers at one individual, there's three pointing right back at you. Let's all clean up what we do, whether we're a coach or a player, and let's perform to our abilities."
The Sharks have just one game in the next week, playing in St. Louis on Feb. 19 before heading back to Chicago on Feb. 22. Plenty of time for a shake up and a good opportunity to attempt to affect some sort of change on a team that looks nothing like the 7-0-0 squad that exploded out of the start of the season.
"It's amazing what's happened in 15 days," said McClellan. "It doesn't even look like the same team. Not even remotely close. Are we going to rely on what we saw early in the year and the performances that we were receiving, or are we going to take the [last] seven games and evaluate on that? I guess we have to make those decisions."
The players, for their part, seem resigned to the notion that changes could be coming down the pipeline, whether that's demotions on line combos, a notable benching or even trades. The window for the Sharks contending for the cup, with the team as currently constructed, is quickly fading.
"That's the reality of the business. People get traded, that's just the reality of it," said Sharks captain Joe Thornton.