Sharks win Western Conference Finals, Advance to Stanley Cup
Back in January after shooting too many weekday Sharks games (so much traffic!!!) I made the call to ask if I could be put on Sharks games only if NOTHING else was happening and really needed me to cover. Then I heard they were in the playoffs and thought, "uh oh... did my hatred of traffic just write me out of covering playoff games?".
So when my assignment editor asked if I would be interested in covering the Western Conference Finals, I obviously enthusiastically said yes! (Though it's still to be determined whether anything is worth suffering through South Bay afternoon traffic).
As it worked out, I was assigned to cover (if needed) game 6 in the Western Conference finals. And what a historic win! The San Jose Sharks handedly defeated the St. Louis Blues 5-2 to be awarded the Clarence S. Campbell Bowl and advance to their FIRST IN HISTORY Stanley Cup Finals!
Had a great time teaming up with John Hefti (check out our full set of photos for USA Today Sports Images here) for the best coverage... given some rough shooting conditions. USA Today wasn't assigned any ice level shooting positions, and the elevated photo wells were also all assigned, down to assignments of who could have the privilege of standing in the isles. Strategizing with John how we could get the best coverage included considering how to ensure one of us had an angle and also considering, a Sharks win becomes historic and a Blues win just means another game, so while one of us had full ice view for safety, the other one would shooting towards Sharks goal. At least for the 1st and 2nd periods.
Then for the 3rd, if Sharks were in any position to win (which 4-0 they certainly were) I was to go down and line up by the Zamboni entrance, where I needed to be with 5 minutes on the clock (meaning leave with 10 minutes on the clock to walk across the top bowl, go down two stories and walk around to Zamboni staging area) in order to be escorted onto the ice to photographer the ever thrilling "trophy presentation"... where all the players refuse to touch the trophy as part of a superstition that they should only hoist the Stanley Cup trophy and any other trophy hoisting is bad luck.
So the photo didn't make for much but was able to get some other celebration photos I was relatively pleased with given the overall scene.
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