The San Jose Sharks are back at SAP Center!
No, really. After a series of stops and starts — including a few moments where it looked like the Sharks could return to SAP Center as early as Feb. 1 — the team announced this afternoon that they would be returning to SAP Center on Feb. 13 and 15 for home games against the Anaheim Ducks.
“The Sharks will return to SAP Center for the Feb. 13 and 15 games against the Anaheim Ducks and for the remaining 2020-21 home games,” the San Jose Sharks said in a statement. “Per County directives, spectators will not be allowed to attend these games.”
It’s welcome news for the Sharks and their staff, who have been on the road since the beginning of training camp on Dec. 30. By the time that they return home after a Feb. 11 tilt with the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center, they will have been on the road for 44 days. And this doesn’t include players and staff who went to Arizona well in advance of training camp for quarantine or logistical reasons.
In total, it appears the San Jose Sharks will miss just two home dates on their schedule. After Feb. 11, the Sharks will have played 12 of their first 14 games as the road team. If San Jose can manage to survive this grueling road trip with their head above water, 26 of their next 42 games will at home.
Anyway, how close were the San Jose Sharks to playing at SAP Center on Feb. 1 and 3?
Last Saturday, the team officially announced that they would be playing those games against the Vegas Golden Knights at Gila River Arena. Two days later, the County of Santa Clara announced that pro sports could resume in San Jose. Last night, Bob Boughner intimated that the location of the Feb. 1 game was still up in the air.
“After consultation with the National Hockey League and the National Hockey League Players’ Association, the Sharks Feb. 1 and 3 games will be played in Glendale, AZ as previously announced,” the Sharks said. “While we are pleased to have received permission for the team to return to Santa Clara County, there are numerous health and safety issues – both from the County and League level – that need to be implemented to ensure the safety of the returning players and staff.”
It sounds like there’s still a lot of work to do before the Sharks can safely return to SAP Center by Feb. 13. But at least they have a date to circle on the calendar.
A limited number of tickets for the Feb. 1 and 3 games at Gila River Arena will be available for fans residing in Arizona.
A very limited number of tickets, situated in physically-distanced pods, for the Feb. 1 and Feb. 3 Sharks vs. Vegas games in Glendale will be available for fans residing in Arizona. Learn more: https://t.co/ruh9LYifHG.
— San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks) January 28, 2021
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