The Most Exciting Sequences of the Decade Inside the Shark Tank
With the decade quickly coming to a close, what better way to look back on the thrilling moments the Sharks provided their fans then to recap the most exciting sequences in their home arena?
HP Pavilion, or "the Shark Tank," as hockey fans call it, is widely considered as one of the loudest buildings in the league by fans and players alike.
Especially come playoff time, the true Shark fans seem to come out in bunches and get all riled up when they wave those rally towels or shake those pom-poms.
But throughout the decade, their have been sequences that rock the tank in both the regular season and the post-season. However, not all of them came just by virtue of the Sharks scoring.
There have been fights, great defensive efforts and all-around playoff performances that have caused Sharks fans to stand up and cheer like no tomorrow.
Before we enter the new decade, let's take a look to remember the top 10 sequences inside the Shark Tank!
10. Devin Setoguchi, Patrick Marleau Snatch Win From Jaws of Defeat
Earlier this year, the Sharks played in two intense home games during mid-January and the second of which came against the Vancouver Canucks and ended in dramatic fashion.
While Claude Lemieux made his return to the NHL and dished out some solid hits on the Sharks' fourth line, for 59 minutes, the game was a relative snooze fest for the fans.
Despite the grittiness and intensity both clubs brought to the ice, the much weaker Canucks squad got an early 1-0 lead and started playing the trap in the neutral zone.
Subsequently, offensive chances for both teams were few and far between but late in the game, things picked up for San Jose.
After a huge stop by goaltender Evgeni Nabokov on a Mats Sundin breakaway with a little over three minutes remaining, the Sharks picked up their game.
Down just a 1-0 in the final minute, Joe Thornton slipped a pass through the mass of humanity in and around the crease and to the stick of Devin Setoguchi who fired it home to tie the score with 39.1 seconds remaining.
With the flow of the game the way it was, almost nobody inside the Tank thought the Sharks would be able to tie the score, so when they did, the fans went absolutely bonkers.
During the overtime period the Sharks didn't only score but Marleau had two brilliant breakaway chances prior to making the third chance the charm.
Right after being stuffed on the second breakaway, Thornton picked up a loose puck in the corner and fired into the slot where Marleau ripped into the top corner on one-time shot to win the game and Shark Tank erupted once again.
The last five minutes of regulation and overtime period was some of the most exciting Sharks hockey the HP Pavilion has ever seen.
9. Ryane Clowe's Four Assists Lead Sharks to 6-5 Win over Detroit
The first of those two mid-January games earlier this year matched up the top two teams in the Western Conference, as the Sharks took on the Detroit Red Wings.
Considering it was the power-houses of the West going at it, it was no surprise the game ended up as a one-goal differential but it was a pleasant surprise how the game lived up to the hype.
Sometimes games that are hyped up by the fans and media don't live up to the billing, but this one did.
The Sharks ended up winning 6-5 and just like the final score suggests, the game was close every minute of the contest. San Jose built a 1-0 lead but Detroit tied it up. Then the Sharks re-took the lead, only for the Red Wings to tie it up again.
Once Detroit even the score at two, they took their first lead of the game in the second period when Johan Franzen put them up 3-2.
But the Sharks bounced back to tie the score at three a piece soon after the Wings had taken the lead.
Later in the middle frame, the Wings once again took a one goal lead when Henrik Zetterberg chipped in a rebound, but this time the Sharks tied it back up before the period came to a close.
Back and forth, back and forth the game went until the third period. Half way through the final 20 minutes, both Milan Michalek and Patrick Marleau scored amazing breakaway goals, the latter of which was set up by a brilliant assist from Ryane Clowe, his fourth of the game.
It was the third goal in a row for the Sharks and the first point in the game where either team had a two-goal cushion and the Sharks would hang onto win in the final moments.
Beating the Red Wings is always special for Sharks fans, but winning in that thrilling of a back-and-forth game really got the Tank rolling big time.
8. Brad Staubitz Obliterates Jordin Tootoo
Sharks up and coming young enforcer Brad Staubitz may shoot right-handed, but he's got a dynamite left hook that he landed into the face of Nashville Predators pest Jordin Tootoo about six times in rapid succession.
The fight took place early last March when the Predators were in town and Tootoo was running around too much for Staubitz's liking and the two middleweights dropped the gloves.
While both Scott Parker and Jody Shelley have been with the Sharks during the decade, it was this bout by Staubitz that got the Sharks fans on their feet and cheering louder than they ever have for a fight.
Not a single other fight at the HP Pavilion has been as one-sided in favor of the Sharks as Staubitz's shellacking of Tootoo was on this night. If you haven't seen the domination, take a look at this:
7. Niko Dimitrakos Beats St. Louis in Overtime
Alright, I have to give a disclaimer on this one: I'm a little biased.
On the night that Niko Dimitrakos scored in overtime to beat the St. Louis Blues 1-0 in game one of the 2003-04 quarter-final series, I was in attendance for my first-ever Sharks playoff game.
I was 12, and never before had experienced the utter chaos and uproar of a Sharks goal during the postseason with all those rally towels being whipped about frantically.
Lucky for me, the first time witnessing it came in overtime when the Sharks had gone scoreless the entire game.
Combined with a 20-second goal horn and an absolutely frenzied Sharks crowd, Dimitrakos' goal led to what is by far the most exhilarating few minutes of my entire childhood.
The goal had also come right after a Blues 2-on-1 rush nearly ended the game and so it was essentially a sharp shift in emotions in a short period of time that ended in pure joy.
It was by far the most thrilling playoff OT goal of the decade for the Sharks on home ice.
6. Patrick Marleau Playoff Hat Trick Against Nashville
While Sharks fans certainly have a right to complain about Patrick Marleau's performance in the playoffs over recent seasons, back in 2005-06 playoffs they had no reason to complain at all.
In game four of the Sharks quarter-final series against the Nashville, the then-captain Marleau led the way with an absolutely dominant hat trick performance to extend the series lead to a comfortable three games to one.
San Jose would go onto clinch the series on the road the following game, but it was Marleau's hat trick performance that really stuck the fork in the Predators' hopes of advancing.
The third playoff hat trick of his career, Marleau brought the house down back on April 27, 2006.
5. The "5 on 1-and-a-half" Penalty Kill Against Edmonton
In game two of the semi-final series against the Edmonton Oilers back in 2006, the Sharks were in dire need of a clear.
While facing a 5-on-3 power-play, both defenseman Scott Hannan and center Mark Smith had broken their sticks attempting to block shots.
Kyle Mclaren was the only Shark skater on the ice with a stick against five Oilers players ready to pull the trigger at any moment.
After battling and battling to keep the puck out of the net, finally a stick-less Hannan was able to dive and clear the puck out of the zone and the first penalty was over.
As Hannan cleared the puck, every single fan was on their feet and yelling in approval at the top of their lungs. It was without a doubt the loudest the Shark Tank has ever been for a non-Sharks goal situation.
In fact, without the goal horn and hey song drowning out the cheering, you were able to tell just how much noise Sharks fans generate solely on their own power.
It was a moment I will never forget, as I was in attendance for this game as well.
4. Patrick Marleau Playoff Hat Trick Against Colorado
Before you score your third career playoff hat trick, you have to score your second career playoff hat trick. Patrick Marleau made that happen in Game 2 of the semi-final series against Colorado back in 2004.
Why was this hatty of Patty's more memorable then either his first against the Blues or third against the Predators? Because it came against the Colorado Avalanche.
The team that had constantly been a nemesis for the Sharks come the post-season and was always one of the top teams in the league at the time.
Being able to soundly beat the Aves by a final of 5-2 in the second game of the series to take a 2-0 series lead felt like a change in the guard in the Western Conference. The Sharks were finally going to reach the third round of the playoffs, and they did.
Four games later, the Sharks had clinched their first-ever Western Conference Finals appearance and a large part of it was due to the play of Marleau.
3. The Comeback Against the Los Angeles Kings
"And the magical season ends with more magic here at the Shark Tank."
That was Sharks TV play-by-play announcer Randy Hahn's call when the Sharks won the 2003-04 season finale in overtime against the Los Angeles Kings.
Without a doubt, it was the best comeback in Sharks history, as they were down 3-1 in the 82nd game of the season and there were only 23 seconds remaining in the game with a face-off deep in the Kings zone.
The Sharks won the draw and then Brad Stuart blasted a slap-shot to bring San Jose within a goal. In-fact, with the playoff position locked up, all I was honestly looking for was the Sharks to get a goal to make the score respectable.
But the Sharks and specifically Stuart, weren't satisfied with just making the score look good in the box score, they wanted more.
Despite having just 19.8 seconds to get another goal to tie the score, the Sharks did just that. Vinny Damphousse got possession of the puck in the corner and fired a pass to the net that Stuart was able to re-direct past the goaltender to tie the game with just 3.1 seconds left.
In overtime Damphousse was able to gain space in the slot and wire a shot top corner to win the game.
Without this amazing finish to the season and the then franchise record 107 points, who knows if the Sharks enjoy the same post-season success that season.
That is why this comeback, while not necessarily vital, has to be near the top of this list.
2. Mike Ricci Hat Trick on Fan Appreciation Day 2001
The comeback against the Kings was great; Mike Ricci's hat trick on Fan Appreciation Day during 2001 was awesome.
Beating the Kings in the 2003-04 finale didn't get the Sharks to the playoffs; Ricci's hat trick in the home finale in 2001 clinched his team a spot in the playoffs.
Needing a single point to clinch a playoff spot in the second to last game of the season, the Sharks were down a goal in the final seconds when out of nowhere, Ricci tips home a Patrick Marleau shot for his third goal of the game to tie the score at 4-4.
The goal forced overtime and sent the Sharks to the playoffs. And unlike any other hat trick in Sharks history, the rink was littered with literally thousands of hats as it was hat day at the Shark Tank.
Before the game fans were all given a dark black sharks hat as a part of fan appreciation day and a good 5,000 or more were thrown onto the ice when Ricci tied the game with his hat-trick goal.
Talk about a frenzy inside the Shark Tank!
1. Jeremy Roenick's Game Seven Performance
How could any other sequence be on top of this list? I was mimicking Jeremy Roenick's fist pumps for about a month in my own hockey games after his Game Seven performance against the Calgary Flames two years ago.
In the first and what is so far the only Game Seven ever to be played at the Shark Tank, Jeremy Roenick gave Sharks fans the best individual playoff performance in franchise history.
With two goals and two assists, Roenick powered the Sharks to a 5-3 victory over the Flames to win the series.
Roenick's first goal ignited San Jose to four straight unanswered goals in a nine minute span during the second period that put the game way.
But it was his second goal that put the Sharks up for good and it was a play no Sharks fan will ever forget.
Thrown out on the power-play, Roenick curled up around the point, fired the puck to the net, followed up his shot and picked up his own rebound and snapped a shot into the top corner from a harsh angle and then immediately started into celebratory fist pumps before celebrating with Craig Rivet and the rest of his teammates.
Yes, it was so memorable I can even remember the defensemen who were there to greet him after the huge go-ahead goal.
This is by far the most exciting sequence of the decade inside the Shark Tank. If anyone ever wants to come up with a bigger playoff performance their going to have to come up with something pretty amazing to overtake Roenick for the best playoff performance in Sharks history.
The Tank was rocking and rolling on like no other on that night.