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Degrees of first-round loss

Updated: April 30, 2009, 6:17 PM ET
By Terry Frei | Special to ESPN.com

It's eerie now.

In the final weekend of the regular season, as the Sharks justifiably and efficiently were sending out information that touted Todd McLellan's work in his first season behind the San Jose bench and implicitly touted him as a coach of the year candidate, we asked him after a morning skate about the playoff pressures facing his team.

The situation was far from unique. The 2008-09 Sharks were going to be defined by their postseason run, not what turned out to ...

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