The best team, top goalies and craziest celebration 

November, 30, 2009

Ah, the long holiday weekend is behind us. I had some great food and quality time at home and my garage has never been cleaner!

On the ice, there was fridge full of terrific hockey to watch and enjoy. Now, it's time to play catch-up. Here's the Monday10.

1. Leader of the pack: I have to open this week's offering by congratulating the San Jose Sharks on becoming the first team to reach the 40-point mark. Todd McLellan's team reached that plateau with a solid 4-2 win over the Vancouver Canucks on Sunday night. Rookie Frazer McLaren scored his first goal in the victory. (So, let me slap a high five on old No. 68, too.)

San Jose certainly made the most of its two-game weekend trip to Western Canada, after playing home-ice turkeys in an ugly 7-2 loss to the Blackhawks on Thanksgiving eve.

On Friday night, the Sharks overcame a pair of third period deficits en route to a 5-4 shootout win over the Edmonton Oilers. The game featured Dany Heatley's first trip to Edmonton since he vetoed a trade that would have put him in an Oilers sweater. Not surprisingly, the Rexall Place crowd spent a good portion of the evening booing Heatley, who didn't seem all that bothered by it.

The more interesting bit of news from that game was Dan Boyle's busy night. The terrific puck-moving defenseman finished with a whopping 34:28 minutes of ice time. Those are some serious minutes. No doubt, he was probably happy to see captain Rob Blake return to the lineup in Vancouver. Blake, who'd been out since Nov. 4, was a plus-2 in 21:12 minutes against the Canucks.

E.J. Hradek

Senior Writer, ESPN The Magazine
E.J. Hradek is a senior writer at ESPN The Magazine, joining the staff prior to its launch in 1998. He began covering hockey as a writer/editor for Hockey Illustrated in 1989.