Until last night San Jose had previously lost six of their last seven games.
At the trade deadline San Jose decided to add some tougher sharks to their tank to try and change a certain aspect of their game.
San Jose picked up two-wingers from the Colorado Avalanche to try adding a more physical aspect to their lineup.
Wingers T.J. Galiardi and Daniel Winnik have a combined 13 goals and over 30 points so far this season, but their scoring abilities wasn’t the reason San Jose picked them up.
These two aggressive forwards had over 150 combined hits this season and will be a strong force in San Jose.
In those seven games the Sharks had only put up 123 hits, while their opponents pounded 147 into them. San Jose was out-hit in six of those seven matches and only passed the 20-hit mark twice in those games.
Even though hitting won’t directly put points on the board it can help wear down their opponents, cause poor offensive decisions leading to turnovers and showed to be one of the main reasons why the Sharks beat the Philadelphia Flyers last night.
The city of brotherly love is also home to one of the toughest and best hockey teams in the NHL. In a 1-0 victory for San Jose defense played the largest role in this game.
Holding Philadelphia to only 26 shots and putting up 28 hits was some of the best defensive and aggressive hockey San Jose had played since January.
Though Galiardi and Winnik did not have the most hits for the Sharks last night, the influence to play more aggressive hockey didn’t come out of nowhere.
Expect San Jose to rising back to the top of their division, conference and even the league with their new tough-guy mentality.
San Jose will be hosting the Buffalo Sabres Thursday night in an attempt to take back first in the Pacific.