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Peng to the Point

Cathy’s Power Skating Hits the Ice Again

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Every Sunday at Peng to the Point, we talk about the world away from the San Jose Sharks.

Cathy Andrade without ice? She’s like a fish out of water.

“Besides my maternity leave [in 1999], this is pretty well the longest time that I’ve been off the ice since…I don’t know,” the power skating coach told San Jose Hockey Now. “I’ve been coaching for over 35 years. This is the longest break I’ve had in a long time.”

Andrade runs Cathy’s Power Skating out of Solar4America Ice in San Jose, where the San Jose Sharks practice. Andrade has been teaching power skating in the Bay Area to all age levels since 1992 and has worked privately with Sharks like Joe Pavelski and Kevin Labanc. Because of COVID-19 protocols, this is the first week since March that Cathy’s Power Skating has been on the ice.

“A year ago, I was working five, six hours a day doing private and semi-private lessons. Right now, there’s only an hour, two hours a day that are even available to us,” Andrade said, “It’s only a fraction of what we were able to do. We went from being able to potentially coach eight hours a day to one or two hours.”

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Day 1️⃣ after 6️⃣ month break…getting the rust off the wheels ▶️ using 🏒 stick as a level ⚖️ to establish balance & posture for quick reactive movements, without bad habits like counterbalancing by dropping shoulders! ☑️ edges ☑️ posture ☑️ rotational sequence ☑️ crossovers ☑️ outside edge punch ▶️ note that it’s the right inside edge that allows the movement range for the left hip to get the deke💥 . . . #edges #crossover #deke #hockeyplayer #hockey #californiahockey #balance #strong #playerdevelopment #hockeygram #powerskatingdrills #hockeyskills #usahockey #hockeytraining #minorhockey #development #powerskatingcoach #skatewithpower #stridemechanics #powerskating #learning #skating #coaching #makeyourextrahourcount @extrahourtraining #gettheleadingedge @cathyspowerskating

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Like so many small businesses, Andrade has faced unprecedented challenges over the last half-year. For example, it will be the first year since 1998 that Power Hour, her signature power skating program, won’t see the light of day.

“I usually do it in the spring,” Andrade said. “That affects the [six or so] coaches who work with me.”

Andrade noted that Cathy’s Power Skating applied for, but did not receive a SBA Paycheck Protection Program loan. Her husband Randy Andrade’s Extra Hour Training, an off-the-ice hockey training facility also located in San Jose, also did not receive a loan. Another Andrade business, unrelated to hockey, did. Like most small business owners, the Andrades don’t know why one business received a loan, while the others didn’t.

That’s not Cathy’s Power Skating’s only challenge.

“In this climate, you can’t really plan beyond this week,” Andrade pointed out. “Right now this ice time, they’ve just offered it up as a two-week [trial]. I’ve had last week and this [coming] week. I don’t know until they release it.”

Andrade isn’t complaining — this is everybody’s reality now.

“It’s ever-changing. You have state regulations. You have county,” Andrade observed. “You have to really stay on top of what you’re doing. You have to kind of re-invent yourself almost every few weeks.”

Luckily for Andrade, she’s not the only one with a hunger for ice. Her limited lessons are all booked. She’s grateful to Solar4America Ice for being as accommodating as they’ve been and to the parents and students loyal to Cathy’s Power Skating. And she hopes the players who have essentially missed an entire off-season of training haven’t missed out on too much.

“Power Hour occurs in the off-season and the spring because it’s a perfect time for skill development,” Andrade said. “The off-season is when players should be working on things like stride mechanics and elevating the edge work.”

Welcome to your new home for San Jose Sharks breaking news, analysis and opinion. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and don't forget to subscribe to SJHN+ for all of our members-only content from Sheng Peng and the National Hockey Now network.

Peng to the Point

Remembering Hamby Shore

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Every Sunday at Peng to the Point, we talk about the world away from the San Jose Sharks.

Hamby Shore was the first NHL player to die in a pandemic.

This week, 102 years ago, three-time Stanley Cup winner Hamby Shore succumbed to the influenza epidemic of 1918. The Ottawa Senators fan favorite was just 32.

The Province, October 14, 1918.

Seven months later, the Montreal Canadiens’ Joe Hall caught influenza during the 1919 Stanley Cup Final, dying just four days after the cancellation of the series.

Shore and Hall were just two of the about 50 million who died because of this pandemic.

There’s two reasons why I’m bringing this up: First, to commemorate Shore’s October 13, 1918 death. Second, as a reminder as professional and college sports in North America hurry back to action.

And sure, the COVID-19 pandemic is not the influenza epidemic of 1918. Though looking at raw mortality numbers — over 1.1 million dead worldwide because of the coronavirus, per John Hopkins, may not paint the full picture of its deadliness compared to 1918.

But anyway, sports are going to push forward — in its halting, start-and-stop manner — as it did 102 years ago.

Our sport of choice is a prime example of this.

The 1919 Stanley Cup Final was canceled after five games, but otherwise, the league completed its 1918-19 and 1919-20 seasons.

This year, the NHL regular season was shortened, but six months later, the 2020 Stanley Cup Final was completed in a bubble.

Commissioner Gary Bettman hopes to begin the 2020-21 campaign in January, three months after the customary October opening night.

So sports isn’t going away — but neither is the coronavirus.

The 102nd anniversary of Shore’s death is a stark reminder: Athletes, as young and healthy as they are, can very much be vulnerable to COVID-19.

A recent — admittedly small-scale — study suggested that individuals who have experienced COVID-19 are more susceptible to myocarditis, a potentially fatal inflammation of the heart muscle. Essentially, heart damage may be a price to play for some athletes.

Auston Matthews and Connor McDavid are among the NHL superstars who are known to have tested positive for COVID-19.

There’s of course a lot we’re still learning about the novel coronavirus. The myocarditis study is hardly conclusive.

But remember Hamby Shore: One successful playoff bubble doesn’t mean the NHL is immune to the still-raging pandemic.

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Hockey History

Where Does Joe Pavelski Rank Among Greatest American Skaters?

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Credit: NBC

Every Sunday at Peng to the Point, we talk about the world away from the San Jose Sharks.

It’s impossible to compare eras.

But yesterday, my colleague Jimmy Murphy from Boston Hockey Now threw this out there:

My initial reaction was there were at least 10 Americans that I could think of who I’d start a franchise with over prime Joe Pavelski.

However, Pavelski’s case to be a top-15 all-time American player might be stronger than you think.

After some spirited online debate, I identified three standards to compare between eras: Prime, Career, and Playoff.

And with the help of Hockey Reference’s Stathead, I actually had some measures to try to compare eras.

So who are the greatest American skaters? And where does Pavelski stack up?

But before we get going: To Brett or not to Brett?

Every significant American goal-scoring record is owned by Canadian-born Brett Hull, who represented the United States in international competition. You name it — Hull has the most single-season, career, and playoff goals of any American.

It’s because of Hull that every American NHL record has to be categorized as American-born, to simply give everybody else a chance.

Case in point:

Pretty good, right? Well, Pavelski is still 42 playoff goals away from catching Hull.

For the purpose of this debate and to include the best of the best, I’m making the executive decision to include Hull.

Prime

Including Hull, there have been 20 American 50-goal seasons:

PlayerSeasonTeamGoals
Brett Hull1990-91STL86
Brett Hull1989-90STL72
Brett Hull1991-92STL70
Brett Hull1993-94STL57
Jimmy Carson1987-88LAK55
Kevin Stevens1992-93PIT55
Brett Hull1992-93STL54
Pat LaFontaine1989-90NYI54
Kevin Stevens1991-92PIT54
Jeremy Roenick1991-92CHI53
Bobby Carpenter1984-85WSH53
Pat LaFontaine1992-93BUF53
Keith Tkachuk1996-97PHX52
John LeClair1997-98PHI51
John LeClair1995-96PHI51
Joe Mullen1988-89CGY51
John LeClair1996-97PHI50
Mike Modano1993-94DAL50
Keith Tkachuk1995-96WIN50
Jeremy Roenick1992-93CHI50

Hull owns five of the top-seven spots. For what it’s worth, every one of these 20 campaigns occurred from 1984-1997, a mostly high-scoring period of time in the league. Pavelski’s career-high 41-goal 2013-14 campaign is tied for just 41st among top American goal-scoring campaigns.

That 41st, however, becomes far more impressive when we use Hockey Reference’s Adjusted Goals metric:

PlayerSeasonTeamAdjusted Goals
Brett Hull1990-91STL78
Brett Hull1991-92STL63
Brett Hull1989-90STL61
John LeClair1997-98PHI59
Auston Matthews2019-20TOR56
Keith Tkachuk1996-97PHX54
Brett Hull1993-94STL52
John LeClair1996-97PHI52
Patrick Kane2015-16CHI52
Tony Amonte1998-99CHI51
Brett Hull1994-95STL50
John LeClair1995-96PHI49
John LeClair1998-99PHI49
Kevin Stevens1991-92PIT48
Keith Tkachuk1995-96WIN48
Brian Gionta2005-06NJD48
Zach Parise2008-09NJD48
Jeremy Roenick1991-92CHI47
Tony Amonte1999-00CHI47
Bill Guerin2001-02BOS47
Jimmy Carson1987-88LAK46
Joe Pavelski2013-14SJS46
Keith Tkachuk1997-98PHX46

Pavelski’s 2013-14 rises to tied for 21st on the list.

These adjustments for era matter.

Patrick Kane, for example, shows up just twice in the top-10 list for single-season assists by an American forward. His career-high 66 assists in 2018-19 is fourth all-time.

But using adjusted assists, Kane suddenly dominates, taking five of the top-10 spots. His 2018-19 also shoots up to second behind Pat Lafontaine.

Here’s a comparison, by the way, of top-10 points by an American skater, raw and adjusted:

 PlayerSeasonTeamPointsPlayerSeasonTeamAdjusted Points
1Pat LaFontaine1992-93BUF148Pat LaFontaine1992-93BUF119
2Kevin Stevens1991-92PIT123Patrick Kane2015-16CHI119
3Kevin Stevens1992-93PIT111Patrick Kane2018-19CHI111
4Patrick Kane2018-19CHI110Kevin Stevens1991-92PIT109
5Joe Mullen1988-89CGY110John LeClair1998-99PHI102
6Jeremy Roenick1993-94CHI107John LeClair1996-97PHI101
7Jeremy Roenick1992-93CHI107John LeClair1997-98PHI100
8Jimmy Carson1987-88LAK107Doug Weight1995-96EDM100
9Patrick Kane2015-16CHI106Johnny Gaudreau2018-19CGY99
10Craig Janney1992-93STL106Patrick Kane2019-20CHI99

All these adjusted stats suggest that Hull is the dominant American scorer, Pat Lafontaine and Kane are the dominant playmakers up front. We also get a good sense of how unstoppable John LeClair was in the “dead puck” era.

So that was the statistical portion of the argument. Subjectively, which American skaters, in their primes, are clearly ahead of Pavelski?

From these lists, Hull, Lafontaine, Kane, and LeClair jump out. For his strong two-way play and leadership, both Pavelski strong suits, coupled with otherworldly skills, Mike Modano can’t be denied. Among defensemen, it’s hard to dispute American Norris Trophy winners Chris Chelios, Brian Leetch, and Rod Langway. Three-time Norris Trophy runner-up Mark Howe deserves mention. Auston Matthews is simply too special a player right now, even at just 23 years old.

After this elite top-10 though, perhaps we can start to debate Pavelski. But it would be a fierce debate: Up front, prime Keith Tkachuk, Tony Amonte, Bill Guerin, Kevin Stevens, Joe Mullen, Bill Guerin, Phil Kessel, Zach Parise, Neal Broten, Jack Eichel, Phil Kessel, and Doug Weight are very much in this tier of the conversation. In the back-end, Phil Housley, Ryan Suter, Dustin Byfuglien, and John Carlson, among others, are in the discussion too.

Career

We’ll focus on regular season careers here.

The 36-year-old Pavelski actually shows well here.

Pavelski’s 792 points is 20th among all Americans. But let’s look at adjusted all-time points:

PlayerCareer PointsPlayerCareer Adjusted Points
Brett Hull1391Mike Modano1408
Mike Modano1374Brett Hull1390
Phil Housley1232Jeremy Roenick1228
Jeremy Roenick1216Patrick Kane1154
Keith Tkachuk1065Keith Tkachuk1150
Joe Mullen1063Phil Housley1148
Doug Weight1033Doug Weight1099
Brian Leetch1028Brian Leetch1039
Patrick Kane1022Phil Kessel968
Pat LaFontaine1013Tony Amonte953
Chris Chelios948Bill Guerin921
Neal Broten923Joe Mullen918
Tony Amonte900Chris Chelios908
Phil Kessel861Pat LaFontaine902
Bill Guerin856John LeClair893
Gary Suter844Joe Pavelski882
John LeClair819Zach Parise881
Ed Olczyk794Blake Wheeler857
Zach Parise792Brian Rolston828
Joe Pavelski792Scott Gomez820

Pavelski finds himself just outside the top-15 now and a lot closer to Hall of Famers Lafontaine and Mullen. Tkachuk, Weight, Amonte, Guerin, and Kessel’s careers suddenly start to look more impressive.

Meanwhile, Pavelski’s 369 goals is 13th among all American skaters. Once again, however, his adjusted figures are more impressive:

 PlayerCareer GoalsPlayerCareer Adjusted Goals
1Brett Hull741Brett Hull738
2Mike Modano561Keith Tkachuk584
3Keith Tkachuk538Mike Modano578
4Jeremy Roenick513Jeremy Roenick514
5Joe Mullen502Bill Guerin467
6Pat LaFontaine468Patrick Kane449
7Bill Guerin429John LeClair447
8Tony Amonte416Tony Amonte443
9John LeClair406Zach Parise435
10Patrick Kane389Joe Mullen432
11Zach Parise386Phil Kessel422
12Phil Kessel371Joe Pavelski418
13Joe Pavelski369Pat LaFontaine414

Pavelski has suddenly joined the 400-goal club, moving ahead of Lafontaine.

Do we start to have the argument that Pavelski can be a top-15 all-time American skater?

Playoffs

If we don’t yet, this is where Pavelski absolutely shines.

Unfortunately, Hockey Reference doesn’t have adjusted post-season stats. But we can do some quick-and-dirty math to approximate adjusted playoff figures — basically, I extrapolated regular-season adjustments and applied them to playoff goals.

Here’s your new top-six among Americans in post-season goals:

 Adjusted Playoff GoalsPlayoff Goals
Brett Hull103103
Joe Pavelski6961
Patrick Kane6052
Mike Modano6058
Jeremy Roenick5353
Joe Mullen5260

Obviously, Pavelski is still sitting pretty.

And here’s something truly striking. Among the top-13 all-time American regular season goal scorers, Pavelski is the only one whose goal-scoring pace increased in the playoffs, albeit marginally:

 PlayerRegular Season Goals Per Game Playoff Goals Per GameDifference
1Brett Hull0.580.51-0.07
2Mike Modano0.370.33-0.04
3Keith Tkachuk0.450.31-0.14
4Jeremy Roenick0.380.34-0.04
5Joe Mullen0.470.42-0.05
6Pat LaFontaine0.540.38-0.16
7Bill Guerin0.340.28-0.06
8Tony Amonte0.350.22-0.13
9John LeClair0.420.27-0.15
10Patrick Kane0.40.38-0.02
11Zach Parise0.380.35-0.03
12Phil Kessel0.350.350
13Joe Pavelski0.360.380.02

Now that’s impressive.

Top-30, Top-20, Top-10?

Prime Pavelski is a clear top-30 American skater. Factoring in his longevity, top-20 seems reasonable. Do his post-season exploits get him into the top-10 debate?

I’m not sure — but if you had to win a Game Seven with all U.S. skaters, Pavelski would be a sure-fire pick. Besides production, you’ll also get inspiring leadership and reliable two-way play.

We’ll see if Pavelski can keep adding to his illustrious playoff legacy tonight.

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Peng to the Point

Eva Paterson on Sharks’ Involvement in Prop 16

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Credit: Freedom To Marry (CC BY 2.0)

Every Sunday at Peng to the Point, we talk about the world away from the San Jose Sharks.

“It’s unprecedented.”

That’s what Eva Paterson, president of the Equal Justice Society, said of the seven Bay Area male professional sports teams — the Golden State Warriors, the Oakland A’s, the San Francisco 49ers, the San Jose Earthquakes, the Oakland Roots, the San Francisco Giants, and the San Jose Sharks — uniting last month in support of Proposition 16.

When’s the last time you saw an entire region’s pro sports teams get behind a ballot measure?

“I’ve been here since 1971. I came here after I graduated from Northwestern,” Paterson, a lawyer who’s been fighting discrimination for five decades, noted. “I’ve never seen this. I’ve never seen this anywhere in the country.”

Paterson is a leading voice behind Prop 16, which seeks to repeal 1996’s Prop 209 and lift the ban on affirmative action.

Whatever side you fall on the measure, it’s fascinating that every Bay Area male sports professional team is speaking up in unison about a political issue.

San Jose Hockey Now spoke with Paterson about how she got the ball rolling on the San Jose Sharks and other teams getting behind Prop 16, whether this is the beginning of more political involvement from sports franchises, and if you really can separate politics and social issues.

Sheng Peng: I’m told you’re a big sports fan. What are your teams?

Eva Paterson: (laughs) Well, I’m one of those corny people who drives around with Warriors banners hanging out of their car windows, honking at other people. I’m goofy like that.

Most of my friends have stopped watching football because of Kaepernick and the head injuries. But I still love football.

SP: How does one get all these teams on board, in support of Prop 16?

EP: We have an amazing political strategy team. Nicole Derse, Brian Brokaw, and Dan Newman did the heavy lifting for us.

The ball got started a couple of days after Mr. George Floyd was murdered. I was called by David Kelly, who’s a vice president at the Warriors, and he asked me to do a Zoom briefing for the Warriors. They have periodic town halls, and team president Rick Welts was there.

I got to talk about racial justice, what was necessary to do, and I mentioned Proposition 16.

SP: Are you pleased in general with how the sports community has dealt with George Floyd’s murder?

EP: The sports community has been remarkable about Black Lives Matter, Jacob Blake, the so many relatively young African-American men who know it could have been them shot or stopped — and many of them have been shot or stopped. They have been simply remarkable in standing up. I loved that the Bucks wouldn’t play.

The sports world has been very good about this. They’ve been using the social platform. I think the whole society has had its blinders ripped away about race. And as a black person, I’ve been part of a community that for decades, in fact, for 400 years has been saying, you know, the hammer’s coming down on us and society needs to stop. And I think it took, as Trevor Noah said, everybody being home, watching their TVs, no distractions, and seeing Mr. Floyd.

I think all of society is really taking a look at systemic racism. So the endorsement by the Bay Area male teams was just magnificent. And then Steve Kerr endorsed Proposition 16.

SP: Can you talk about the San Jose Sharks and hockey’s role in this?

EP: It was wonderful that the Sharks came out for this.

Something else, it was a black hockey player, made his statement about Black Lives Matter, and he was surrounded and backed up by white hockey players.

It was striking. Because you expect the NBA to do this, but not hockey. It stuck in my mind.

Anyway, this is what I like [about that image]: A lot of people who are not political follow sports. Some of them are going to be angry because players are speaking up, but some other people are going to go, wait a minute. Maybe I’d better think about this twice.

In politics, there’s something called a validator. And many people follow people in sports or celebrities or whatever. And so for sports people to say racism is a problem, it’s a big deal, and it will move some people. It really will.

Some people will be alienated, but other people will go, huh? These are white hockey guys saying there’s a problem. It’s a big deal.

SP: Besides their names and prestige, how will the teams be contributing to Prop 16?

EP: I believe they’re going to be giving money, but I’m not sure that has has happened yet. But I understand they are going to be making a contribution.

SP: If Prop 16 passes, will these private-entity teams be applying those same principles to to their own teams?

EP: I certainly hope so. I think it’s more relevant in terms of management, to make sure that upper management is desegregated.

You see a lot of black coaches, which is really good. But you also want to see black and Latino and Asian-American GMs and the like. We hope everybody’s looking internally at their own situation.

SP: In your extensive background in political activism, is this the first time you’ve seen all these teams band together and speak out on a political matter? Is this unprecedented, as far as you know, in state or national history?

EP: It is, it is. I’ve been here since 1971. I came here after I graduated from Northwestern. I’ve never seen this. I’ve never seen this anywhere in the country. It’s unprecedented.

SP: One of the the big conversations over the last few years, since Colin Kaepernick took a knee, there’s the thought that sports should be separated from politics. And obviously, this is a strong statement from the Bay Area sports teams that in fact, sports teams can be leading in politics. Do you see this potentially as kind of a different way of acting from sports teams?

EP: Black athletes and athletes of color have often taken political stances because they have visibility and they’re also black men and black women. So they know what it means to be black in this society. And you can’t pretend you’re just a basketball player and that you’re not black 24/7. So I think this is just a continuation of of a tradition that black athletes and other athletes of color and women athletes have had throughout history. I just think this is great. It’s a step up because it’s not just individual, it’s team. It’s all the male professional sports teams in the Bay Area. That’s extraordinary.

SP: That’s what I’m getting at. We’ve seen individual athletes themselves step up for a long time. But from a team side, the organizational side doing it, that’s what’s different. Do you anticipate that teams are going to start taking more stances on things like this?

EP: My guess would be no. I think we’re in the extraordinary George Floyd moment. His daughter said my dad changed history and he did. I think this is a reaction to a specific moment in American history. That’s about race. I think it’s a singular experience.

Although I’ll tell you, in 2007, I said America will never elect a black president. So what do I know? (laughs)

SP: My last question. One of the things that’s, I guess, a reaction to everything that’s happened, a lot of people are trying to say we care about social issues, we’re not talking about politics here. But it’s hard to separate the two, right? Because it’s often the politics that create or perpetuate these harmful social constructs. What are your thoughts about attempts to separate social issues from politics?

EP: Politics is about power. It’s about decision-making. It’s about who controls the decision. The politics of our country, that’s resulted in systemic racism against people of color and women. So those two are inexorably linked.

Social justice and politics are linked and you cannot separate them.

Welcome to your new home for San Jose Sharks breaking news, analysis and opinion. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and don't forget to subscribe to SJHN+ for all of our members-only content from Sheng Peng and the National Hockey Now network.
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