In the National Hockey League, regular season records and President's Trophies mean nothing in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
They mean NOTHING. Absolutely nothing. Especially when you are the Anaheim Ducks.
Not tonight. Not in the Honda Center.
Not when the San Jose Sharks fell in graceless fashion, 4-1, in Game 6 of the 2009 Western Conference Quarterfinals to the Ducks, losing the series four games to two.
How the might have fallen, and how the sales of shark fin soup gone through the roof. (Okay, the latter was a bit of an exaggeration. Sort of.)
Could Anaheim be thinking that the sky is the limit?
With a performance like this, why not? It should be.
The Sharks-with the most points overall in the league (117)-presented a theory to those who follow the Good Old Hockey Game (apologies, Stompin' Tom Connors): that their regular season will be for naught if they didn't deliver in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
It was prophetic rhetoric, as Anaheim responded to an early 1st period power play goal by Milan Michalek with four unanswered scores past Evgeni Nabokov.
At 12:33 in the first, Corey Perry's power play equalizer via Ryan Getzlaf and Chris Pronger sent the home crowd into raptures.
A rough contest, which saw 30 penalty minutes assessed, and 49 hits from both teams (Anaheim led that category 25-24), culminated in Randy Carlyle's club taking over the second period with two goals with 83 seconds of each other, as well as Joe Pavelski of San Jose and Anaheim's Ryan Whitney launch a fisticuffs.
At 13:03, Teemu Selanne scored his first goal of the campaign: a power play shot via Chris Pronger and Scott Niedermayer. And at 14:26, Ryan Carter and Mike Brown fed Francois Beauchemin with his first of the postseason.
Getzlaf shut out any hope for the Sharks to come back with his second of the postseason with assists to Rob Niedermayer and Drew Miller at 17:06.
Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller had a successful outing, going 36-for-37 in save attempts.
As for Sharks coach Todd McLellan, the only thing he was successful in doing was tearing his hairs out at what was an unceremonious exit.
If this could be a sign for bigger things to come, and if this result is not reduced to a flash in the pan, the Detroit Red Wings could be in trouble.
How you finish in the regular season does not necessarily equate to success in the postseason.
The San Jose Sharks knew it.
And the Anaheim Ducks validated it.