Does a hot second half lead to playoff success? If so, then San Jose should be viewed as a legitimate Stanley Cup contender. The Sharks have gone 27-6-4 since January 15, emerging from the Western Conference playoff pack and climbing in the standings to seize the #2 seed.
Facing off against them in round one will be the Los Angeles Kings, a team with lots of preseason hype that never really came together as expected during the 2010-11 campaign, and now has to overcome additional adversity with the loss of the team's top offensive player, Anze Kopitar. Will Kopitar's absence result in a mismatch, or can the Kings make this all-Pacific Division clash a competitive series?
San Jose Offense vs. Los Angeles Defense
San Jose Sharks Offense: +19.0 GVT (Rank: 6th in NHL)
Los Angeles Kings Defense: +20.5 GVT (Rank: 2nd in NHL)
Los Angeles Kings Goaltending: +5.1 GVT (Rank: 12th in NHL)
Total: San Jose Sharks, -6.6 GVT
The rest of this article is restricted to Hockey Prospectus Subscribers.
Not a subscriber?
Click here for more information
on Hockey Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get access to the best hockey content on the web.