The end of a crazy road trip is in sight for the San Jose Sharks. They lost four-straight games before beating the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday, and have two more games remaining, a back-to-back on Saturday and Sunday against the Nashville Predators and Minnesota Wild before they can return to the HP Pavilion from a nine-game road trip. Nine games is definitely up there, but the Sharks always have an extended trip away from San Jose in February to make time for the SAP Open tennis tournament, which was won by Milos Raonic this year.
Still, they were hoping for better results than this. Best-case scenario is a 4-4-1 record on this road trip, which isn't terrible, but it's not great either. Meanwhile, all of the focus is on this trade deadline and a potential deal with the Columbus Blue Jackets (who embarrassed the Sharks on said road trip) for Rick Nash. San Jose is apparently in heavy pursuit of Nash, so it will be interesting to see if they get a deal done.
For now, they'll work with what they got on Saturday, set to take on the Predators at 5:00 p.m. pacific. Nashville lost their last outing, 3-2 in the shootout to the St. Louis Blues. Before that, they'd won two straight, but had a three-game losing streak near the beginning of February. Still, they're keeping a mostly-steady pace and will be a tough test for the Sharks.
After that, as noted, they'll take on the Wild, who suffered a bad 4-1 loss to the Dallas Stars in their last outing. They don't have a game on Saturday, so they'll be much more rested than the Sharks. Prior to the Dallas loss, Minnesota picked up two solid wins over Boston and Florida, which came after a seven-game losing streak. Minnesota is not in a good way right now, but of course, could turn things around at any time.
The Sharks won't make a move for Nash based on recent games. That doesn't mean they won't make a move on him based on a slew of other things, though. The only thing that's really certain in all of this is that the players have to keep playing, and that Logan Couture isn't up for grabs. Hallelujah.