Always nice when you stumble into probably the best game of the season . . . in your first Sharks game of the season.
That's what happened Tuesday night in the Sharks' 3-2 shootout victory over Los Angeles, and it's always appreciated when teams deliver as the Sharks and Kings did -- after a so-so first period, the second, third, overtime and shootout stanzas were as good as high-level playoff hockey, no doubt.
Which makes you think: This would be an incredible seven-game series in the first round, and that's the way they're lined up as the Nos. 4 and 5 seeds (although the West standings are very volatile right now, as always).
It's an electric atmosphere between these teams, and no player was more kinetic than Brent Burns, the defenseman-turned-forward who just looks ready to blast everything he touches into the net.
"What he's done for our team is a lot like (Colin) Kaepernick for the 49ers," Sharks coach Todd McLellan said of Burns, who was in on both Sharks regulation goals -- scoring one and assisting on T.J. Galiardi's in a 42-second span.
"He has the ability to roam around and be somewhat reckless at times."
Yep, I've gotta appreciate even more when the Sharks coach starts giving out 49ers analogies.
A little later, McLellan told me he loved Burns' second-period goal, which was sort of like a football play when he bounced past a defender, corralled the puck with his body, then whipped it past the goalie.
McLellan had quite the contented smile when he pointed out that Burns just can bull people over . . . and I'll add that Burns' size and aggressiveness absolutely puts defenders on their heels -- kind of like a QB I have watched recently.