The San Jose Sharks had an embarrassing exit from the playoffs in 2012, but team captain Joe Thornton doesn’t believe the team is any worse for the wear after a disappointing season that preceded the five-game dismantling in the first round.
Thornton told CSNBayArea.com on Monday, “They were just a better team. Flat out, they were just a better team than us last year.”
The Sharks went into the playoff series as a threat to go deep into the postseason and make a run at the Stanley Cup, but they were shocked by a hungrier, more aggressive team.
With a potential lockout looming over the prospects of the next NHL season, Thornton is focused on moving the team forward and is not dwelling on the past as he is back in San Jose preparing for the upcoming season that in all likelihood could be put on hold.
Regardless of that fact, the 33-year-old understands what it’s going to take to move the team forward.
“When we’re aggressive, we’re tough to beat.”
The Sharks looked out of sorts against St. Louis, and were outplayed in nearly every facet of the game and took advantage of power plays against a weak penalty killing effort. A new, more focused approach is likely to be the main area of development when the team finally does reconvene for the 2012-2013 season.
Fans can rest assured that Thornton will be ready when that time comes.
Michael C. Jones is the Editor of Sports Out West. For more insight, you can follow him on Twitter @MikeJonesTweets.