San Jose Sharks vs. Detroit Red Wings: 2011 Stanley Cup Implications

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San Jose Sharks vs. Detroit Red Wings: 2011 Stanley Cup Implications
Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

A week ago, hockey fans around the country would have agreed that the series between the San Jose Sharks and Detroit Red Wings was one of the more attractive playoffs matchups thus far.

Nearly deadlocked throughout the entire second half of the 2010-2011 NHL regular season, the Sharks and Wings finished second and third in the Western Conference, with the Sharks edging the Wings out by a mere point.

Three games into the 2011 Western Conference Semi-Finals, the San Jose Sharks hold a dominating 3-0 series lead against a very good Red Wings team. Key reasons include some fortuitous bounces, power play capitalization and phenomenal goaltending. Antii Niemi looks possessed to take his Sharks to the 2011 Stanley Cup Final where he will defend his title as the reigning Stanley Cup Champion goalie.  

The Sharks have taken the most debated series in the playoffs thus far, and turned it into a laugher. With four potential games remaining, the Sharks need just one to advance to the Western Conference Final for another opportunity at clinching their first Stanley Cup bid. 

The Sharks have played from ahead throughout most of the playoffs, yet have showed the poise to grind out victories from behind. If the Sharks continue to play cohesively as a unit, there's a good chance they'll come out on top as the 2011 Stanley Cup Champions.

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