Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water?
The San Jose Sharks found a new way to lose on Friday night, as they gave up a short-handed goal in the third period of a tie game to lose, 2-1, to the Chicago Blackhawks -- their third loss in seven games to the same team.
The Sharks have played some pretty bad hockey against the best team in the National Hockey League this year -- the Blackhawks are now 14-0-3, mind you -- but this took the proverbial cake.
Given a two-minute power play just 24 seconds into the third period, San Jose had a golden opportunity to take command of this game and hand Chicago its first regulation loss of 2013.
Instead, the Sharks gave up a goal on their power play to rookie Brandon Saad, with three seconds left on their own special-teams chance.
And that's why San Jose is 8-5-3 this year.
Good teams do not give up short-handed goals on the road in the third period of tie games.
The Sharks are not a good team right now.
There's not much else to be said: they can't score, they have defensive lapses at the worst possible times, and they've tossed away their own 7-0-0 start to the season by losing eight of their next nine games.
Chicago simply outplayed San Jose in almost every facet of the game: the home team had more shots on goal, more hits, more takeaways and more faceoff wins.
Oh, and of course, in the most important tally, they had more goals, too.
The Sharks have one more game on this six-game road trip, tomorrow night in Dallas. This month is already a lost cause (all eight losses have come in February), and maybe San Jose just can't wait until March.
They have two more home games this month, however, so maybe a return to HP Pavilion on Tuesday will give San Jose a boost -- but the Sharks did lose their last three home games there, nonetheless.
Sooner or later, the team just had to decide whether they care or not, because right now, it doesn't look like they do. The quick start may have given them a false sense of security, but that fast break out of the gate was a long time ago.
San Jose doesn't look like a playoff team right now at all, and with the season more than a third over, the Sharks need to get their bite back.