Puck Probability: Predictions for Kings at Sharks, with a twist

Sharkie-Bailey-NHL-hockey-SHopefully you’re sitting down for this one.

During the 2011 playoffs, Mark Purdy of the San Jose Mercury News wrote a disparaging article about L.A. fans and Staples Center. With the Kings and Sharks tied at one game each in their best-of-seven series – and the Kings coming off a 4-0 shutout in San Jose – things were moving to SoCal for the next two games.

Among the many things Purdy, the Bay Area’s noted curmudgeon, attempted to serve up was that attending a Kings game was akin to “a Kenny G experience.”

As a proud native of Southern California and a sports fan first and foremost, I took great exception to his comments at the time. Obviously, it also struck a chord with the home team. They took to calling out Purdy on the video scoreboard during Game 3 – a contest the Kings ultimately lost 6-5 in overtime, after once holding a commanding 4-0 lead. But, I digress.

Yes, the Sharks won that series in six games, on the road, in Los Angeles.

Fast forwarding in the story nearly three years to the day, the Kings defeated the Sharks in Game 7 of their 2014 playoff series. Following the post-game press conference, Dave Joesph, Jonathan Davis, and I made our way to a local watering hole not too far from the rink. We, unknowingly, ran into friend Kevin Kurz of CSN Bay Area and longtime Sharks scribe David Pollak. Moments later I was introduced to Purdy.

In the spirit of full-disclosure, I did tell him his comments were way off the mark and I didn’t respect what he wrote. He didn’t back down either, likely creating some momentarily awkward tension within our group. A few adult beverages later and some sage advice from previous in life prevailed; there was no reason to hold a grudge. And that’s how Purdy landed a guest spot in today’s Puck Probability.

Enough with the preamble, here are some things each of us think just might happen with the Sharks and Kings meet up tonight for the final game before the NHL shuts down for the All Star break…

Odds by MayorsManor:

2:1 – LA Kings Insider Jon Rosen will again remind us all he is not a Metallica fan… and then turn what should be a night of celebration with the most important rock band of the past 30 years into a conversation about a collective group of hippies better known as PHISH.

3:1 – I will be asked at least five times on twitter, ‘Who is the Sharks captain, again?’

5:1 – Darryl Sutter will refer to the arena as the “Shark Cage” during his post-game press conference.

7:1 – Joe Thornton takes a dumb penalty and is then shown on camera smiling in the penalty box.

9:1 – Sharkie issues an open challenge to Bailey regarding this weekend’s Mascot Showdown at All Star Weekend.

13:1 – Due to the constant pounding he has taken from Raider fans the past few seasons, Purdy, now walking around in a constant dazed and confused state, shows up at Levi Stadium for tonight’s game, rather than the SAP Center.

50:1 – Nick Shore sees more than 11 minutes of ice time.

1000:1 – After years of reflection and now seeing the error of his ways, Purdy will issue a formal apology for that drivel he called an article back in 2011.

Odds by Mark Purdy:

4:1 – Because it’s Metallica Night at SAP Center, someone gets knocked into Never-Never Land by a big hit from either Brayden McNabb or Brenden Dillon.

8:1 – Brent Burns behaves unpredictably, finds himself wildly out of position and the Kings score a goal.

8:1 — Brent Burns behaves unpredictably, finds himself wildly out of position and scores a goal for the Sharks.

10-1 — Anze Kopitar practices for the bad ice at the upcoming Levi’s Stadium game with another dazzling flip pass and leaves the Sharks gaping, as Logan Couture described in his own recent blog post: http://www.theplayerstribune.com/best-centers-in-the-nhl/

500:1 – Joe Thornton and Drew Doughty find each other just before the opening faceoff, stare into each other’s eyes for a few seconds, then rise up and laugh boisterously, pat each others’ shoulders and make plans to meet each other for beer down the street a Patty’s Inn after the game.

REQUIRED READING: Kings and Sharks moving top prospects and AHL teams to California

Also, we have other recent odds articles here.

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About John Hoven

John Hoven is a member of the of the Professional Hockey Writers Association and co-hosts Kings of the Podcast. He is also the founder and editor of MayorsManor.com, which has been named Best Sports Blog in Los Angeles by LA Weekly and Hockey Blog of the Year by Yahoo Sports. Click "ABOUT OUR TEAM" above for a full bio.