But a strange thing happened on the Sharks' way to Los Angeles for Game Three on Tuesday night: they got mad, or something. And San Jose scored seven unanswered goals over the final two periods, on its way to a 7-2 win in Game Two at the SAP Center.
Shocking, really, and perhaps even quite unbelievable.
By the way, in order, the seven unanswered goals off Jonathan Quick were scored by Mike Brown, Raffi Torres, Justin Braun, Patrick Marleau, Joe Pavelski, Logan Couture and Joe Thornton. Having a healthy third line helps, of course.
No one saw this coming, especially after the start to Game Two: everyone knew the Kings would throw everything they had at the Sharks, and they did so successfully. But has San Jose ever shown this much heart in the postseason before?
Maybe back in 1994, when the upstart, eighth-seeded Sharks beat the top-seeded Detroit Red Wings in seven games in the first round. But not so much recently, as San Jose has petered out in the postseason too many times now to count.
And who knows? The Sharks may end up doing so again this year, but tonight, they truly sent a message to the rest of the National Hockey League that this San Jose club is not to be taken lightly -- and that these Sharks are never out of a game. Never.
And San Jose needed to show that resolve in this game; the team needed to stand tall and strong when that L.A. onslaught came, and while the Sharks may have failed that initial test tonight in the first ten minutes, they certainly recovered to flatten the Kings and Quick, easily, in truth.
So after two games, San Jose leads the first-round series, 2-0, and the Sharks have outscored the Kings, 13-5, in those two games -- putting 12 goals on perhaps the best netminder in the NHL, in less than two full games.
(Quick was pulled on Thursday night, but he did remain in net for the full game tonight. Go figure. L.A. may go with the young Martin Jones in net on Tuesday, but we will see.)
Game Three on Tuesday night promises to be nasty, as the third period tonight was pretty chippy as the Sharks began to run away with the victory. The Kings are a talented, proud team just two years removed from their Stanley Cup championship.
This series is far from over, as much as it may look like L.A. is toast right now. Hang on, because the ride will be bumpy for the rest of the first round.