2012 NHL Free Agency : San Jose Sharks – Coyotes Wild Edition.

According to Pro Hockey Talk, Phoenix Coyotes captain Shane Doan is willing to test the free agent market.

Phoenix brought back Zbynek Michalek back from the Penguins, while youngster Keith Yandle has been dangled in trade talks. On a team short on scoring and long on effort, Doan and fellow veteran Ray Whitney are crucial UFA’s the Coyotes must sign.

But how? with the ownership situation as muddled as ever, and the team in limbo for about 3 years now, it doesn’t look likely that their captain will return.

Between former Sharks CEO Greg Jamison, the watchdog Burbank group and Gary Bettman, it’s more than enough ownership and franchise turmoil for Doan to test the waters.

Why should the Sharks go after Shane Doan? After all, he’s definitely not the fleetest of foot, isn’t a huge finisher and is 35 years of age.

But for anyone who ever watched Shane Doan play, it’s quite clear what he brings to the table… and it’s what the Sharks have needed for years.


Doan has it.. in spades. What he lacks in foot speed, shot velocity or any other measureable, he’s got more than enough in the intangibles category.

A long time captain who is hyper competitive and plays with an angry streak, he is the very definition of a guy you hate to play against, but love to have on your team.

Shane put up 50 points (22 goals, 28 assists) in 79 games last year plus five goals and four assists in the Coyotes’ 16-game playoff run. Doan racked up 205 hits and posted a very solid Fenwick score good for 2nd on his team. He averaged about 20 minutes a game, and he can play on the right side allowing Marleau to play center on the 2nd line.

With the resign of Wingels and Desjardins, and the hopefully soon to be dismissed Torrey Mitchell, Doan fits in nicely on the second or even third line.

He’s also the kind of player that will prevent people from taking liberties with Pavelski, Marleau or Thornton, and will do whatever it takes to win.

Bring him home Doug..

Quick Notes :

The San Jose Sharks were busy yesterday, re-signing a trio of skaters in defenseman Justin Braun, forwards Tommy Wingels and Andrew Desjardins.

Reported by the Sacramento Bee, Justin Braun was re-signed for 3 years, Wingels for two and Desjardins for just one. According to the Bee, San Jose also made qualifying offers to forwards T.J. Galiardi, Tim Kennedy, Brandon Mashinter, Frazer McLaren, Matt Pelech and James Sheppard; defensemen Matt Irwin and Nick Petrecki and goalie Alex Stalock.

The Sharks said goodbye to a handful of forwards in Tony Lucia, James Marcou and Cameron MacIntyre, and goalie Tyson Sexsmith by not offering them a qualifying contract. Another skater left without a chair when the music stops is Benn Ferriero, he of the birthday playoff goal.

Good luck to you Benny.

Go Sharks

Snakes on a Plane, or a Parking lot..Shelby Cobras

I respect and admire the way that people, in all walks of life can express themselves using the sheet metal body, four tires and some bolts.

I find myself often rambling when talking with fellow enthusiasts who have an open mind and look across generational lines or racial barriers. Maybe because it’s pretty rare to find nowadays, call it a loss of human respect.

So I love it when I find a group like this Norcal AC Cobra group, at my local eatery this morning.

Talked shop with a bunch of very nice people who just loved cars, and checked out some very cool cars.

Happy Cruising!


Pro Street / Vic Hubbard’s 5-2-9 Madness Sale – 6/21/2012

Pro Street and Vic Hubbard Speed held their second 5 to 9 Madness Sale for 2012, and I had a great time as I always do meeting people, talking cars and shop.

Had a few hours to prep Big Red, unfortunately the weather was terrible so the turnout unfortunately suffered.

This chop top was something else, awesome amount of custom fab and done right.

Had a great time although it was just too damn cold.. had to run for cover.


Pro Street Online 

Vic Hubbard Speed and Marine

San Jose Sharks : Top 3 Reasons why Sharks should pass on JVR

Kevin Kutz from CSN Bay Area recently wrote a piece that hinted at James van Riemsdyk being a good target for the San Jose Sharks, rather than Rick Nash.

We’ve reviewed the potential Rick Nash trade, and the many points as to why we do not need him especially for the price tag (Logan Couture ++++) that Scott Howson seems hell bent on.

Here’s an indepth look at all the possible angles behind the San Jose Sharks acquiring the young winger.

Why the Sharks could get him

I’d like to say I’ll miss this guy… but I’d be lying.

  • Philadelphia’s once stout and deep defense that powered them through the 2010 playoffs seems significantly less deep and stout than it once did.
  • Chris Pronger’s career may be over due to concussion symptoms
  • Kimmo Timonen turns 38 next season
  • Matt Carle looks determined to test the free agent market, where he could command upwards of 5-6 million
  • The Sharks have defenders to spare after signing Brad Stuart, namely Douglas Murray who carries a friendly cap hit ( 2.5 million ) and plays the kind of rough and tumble game the Flyers love to emulate.
  • The free agent pool of defenseman was pretty thin to begin with, but after the Sharks signed Stuart, it’s even thinner.

Why the Sharks won’t be able to get him

  • Ryan Suter is sure to command most of Philly’s attention.
  • Murray has just one year left on his contract after having a rough season a year ago.
  • Do the Sharks really need a winger that produced less than Devin Setoguchi did, all while costing the team more and being more of a defensive liability?

Why the Sharks should NOT get him

  • In three seasons with the Flyers, JVR has 99 points (47g, 52a) in 196 career regular season games.
  • Devin Setoguchi had 82 points (42g, 40a) in 125 career regular season games
  • JVR is young, and does not fit in the team’s “win-now” mode.
  • Van Riemsdyk skated in just 43 games in 2011-12 because of a broken foot, a concussion, a strained oblique and a strained rib, so he ended up with a lackluster 11 goals and 13 assists
  • At 4.25 million a year, he’s expensive for his production from a year ago.

Care to take any guesses at my opinion of Kevin’s recommendation? JVR is not a good fit here in San Jose for the upcoming season, while his youth and promise certainly are attractive, that’s the problem… “promise”

This team needs a proven scorer that will come in and put the puck in the net and eat top six minutes, not a inconsistent, injured young winger.

Did I mention JVR is currently injured and awaiting surgery?

So…. to make a long story short… JVR? I’ll take a pass… Thanks

Go Sharks.

Case Studies : How to fix the P0345 OBDII error in a 2006 Infiniti G35

My 2006 Infiniti G35 Sedan has served me quite well for a number of years, and despite it’s high mileage, been an excellent car for most of it’s life.

With over 200k on the odometer, I guess I cannot fault the Infiniti for acting up recently but I’ve had a difficult time diagnosing it’s current issue. It doesn’t happen all the time, but when warm, the car begins to sputter and misfire and occasionally lurches off idle or with  slight acceleration.

After which time, the check engine light never seemed to light off, but the VCD and ABS lights would stay lit after the car would sputter. After wrongly assuming it was coil related I started testing them, until the car finally threw a code so that I could diagnose it.

And lo and behold, it’s the good ol P0345 OBDII error – P0345 Camshaft Position Sensor Failure A Circuit Bank 2 ; this code indicates that a problem was detected in the camshaft position sensor circuit of bank 2 ( which is the driver side of your VQ35DE).

The steps to diagnose your P0345 code in your G35 ( or any car for that matter )

Read the rest of the article by clicking here.

Case Studies : Prepping Big Red for 5-9 Madness Part II – 6/21/2012

We’ve given Big Red a proper cleaning and in preparation of the next 5-9 Madness at Vic Hubbard, after upgrading the spark plug guides and wires / plugs / gaskets, we’ll be taking the next step today the day of the show.

Installing a new Edelbrock water neck, 160 thermostat and Edelbrock gaskets will help freshen things up for the show!

A shot of the old intake manifold, thermostat and thermostat housing.

Edelbrock part number 7201 will get our intake leaks taken care of and give us a chance to service the carburetor and intake plenum.

A shot with the carburetor off, as we replace all gaskets and service the carb.

Here’s a shot of the SBC all finished up and ready for the 5-9 Madness Show at Vic Hubbard / Pro Street Online.

Want to see more of the classic? Come on out to the 5-9 Madness Car Show!

Happy Cruising!

San Jose Sharks Sign Brad Stuart – New look Defense the Answer?

As expected, defenseman Brad Stuart has signed with the San Jose Sharks to the tune of 3.6 million per for 3 years. It was no small secret that Stuart wanted to return “home” to his wife and daughter, who had to live in California during Stuart’s Red Wing tenure.

Stuart had 21 points and a plus-16 rating in 81 games for Detroit this past season, while playing huge roles in the penalty kill.

With the addition, it reshapes the Sharks defensive corps quite a bit while giving the Sharks a solid top 4 with Boyle, Burns, Vlasic and Stuart. Given Boyle’s age, some may be quick to relegate 22 to the second pairing…. not so fast I would counter.

Boyle struggled a tad early in the year due to injury ( broken foot ) and while fans were heaping dirt on the veteran, he answered and quieted his critics by rebounding nicely after the first month of the season.

With the 8th best Fenwick score on the team and best 5v5 rating from any Sharks defender, it’s clear that Boyle is as important as ever to the Sharks even strength success. Boiler also posted a team high 1.199 Corsi REL QoC, and was fourth on the team with a +1.7 RelCorsi.

Depending on how close you feel the team is to reaching the ever elusive Stanley Cup Finals ( shut up LA ), you may be inclined to see the Sharks roll out :

  • Boyle – Burns
  • Stuart – Vlasic
  • Braun – ????

Top Five Questions after signing Stuart:

5. How many minutes will Boyle play?

He’s led the team in minutes the past 2 seasons, and he still averaged 19.26, good for 2nd on the team. With his age as a factor and the kind of game he plays, the added depth will most certainly give Boiler a chance to be fresh come playoff time.

4. How hard will the coaching staff push Burns?

Brent was up and down in his first season with the Sharks, and it’s a fair question to ask whether or not the coaches gave him more minutes because of Doug Wilson. Given the high price the Sharks paid, it’s a fair question for a defender that led the team in giveaways, turnovers and looked lost some nights.

Burns did turn it up late in the season, scoring 24 points in 36 games from Jan. 7 through March 24, but overall I think it’s fair to say the Sharks haven’t gotten what they expected out of Burns.

Question is, how much are they willing to sacrifice to make sure Burns nets the proper return? If it’s merely a situation of giving him his minutes, I’m all for it. But take minutes away from Braun or possibly Demers, in the quest to pad Brent’s stats and that’s where I draw the line.

3. Will Jason Demers ever show up?

Pretty simple huh? After showing promise and being trusted more and more in late crucial situations in 2010, Demers fell on his face this past year and is quickly becoming an afterthought. With the addition of Stuart, and assuming Crankshaft does not get moved, Demers will have his work cut out for him to earn a roster spot.

2. What impact will Stuart have?

Sadly, I think he’ll just be marginally better than Burns was this year defensively, and won’t approach Brent’s production offensively. Depth and a big minute muncher, but at this stage of his career, it’s a long shot to expect Stuart to make a HUGE impact.

1. What other trades will go down?

Douglas Murray is quickly looking like the Shark without a seat when the music stops, and if so, who will Wilson bring in?

San Jose gave up a promising youngster in Devin Setoguchi, top prospect Charlie Coyle and dropped the team’s first pick in this year’s draft for Burns, and the lack of forward depth made the team look pedestrian.

In fact, one can argue the Sharks are worse off than when they made the Heatley trade, when we were looking for that scorer in the playoffs, remember that?

Whatever trades are to come, I am hoping that it won’t involve Rick Nash. Here’s to hoping against  hope.

Go Sharks.

The Razor Ralph Barbieri rips into KNBR on 95.7 FM ‘The Game’

The Razor is one of the more opinionated and strong willed radio talk show hosts that you will ever hear, his voice is unique and unflinchingly recognizable. His wit and razor sharp tongue earned him the nickname “The Razor” and for 28 years his unique voice serenaded my ears while tuning into the only sports-talk show in town, KNBR.

He’s got a unique sound and a definitive opinion, and quite honestly I couldn’t stand the man or his baited questions for the first half of his career. I thought he was pompous and self serving, and I’d often find a reason, however insignificant to turn off or not listen when Razor was speaking.

Over time, I’ve learned to enjoy Ralph and bear down through the obvious bait questions, and coupled with Tolbert they were easily my most favorite show on KNBR. Not to mention, he’s about the only host that knows the Sharks exist.

But all that changed when KNBR completely and utterly dismissed and disregarded their 28 year employee and vital cog in the Bay Area’s sports psyche. I then realized how much of my daily sports talk intake revolved around Barbieri, and how much I enjoyed the Razor and Mr. T Show.

After listening to Tom Tolbert’s heartfelt goodbye to his longtime partner, I felt even more compelled and sad for Barbieri and fortunate that I had the chance to listen to these 2 men exact their craft for so many years.

Tolbert’s emotions were evident as he spoke about the difficulty in letting go of Ralph and saying good-bye, his honesty and vulnerability was unlike anything I had ever heard on KNBR. Lamenting the fact that in the radio business, not many people get a chance to say bye to their listeners struck a chord with me in regards to Barbieri.

I already disliked the station quite a bit, given other oddly managed firings or promoting / demoting employees for a variety of reasons, none of which made any real sense.

KNBR’s long standing pro-Giants and pro-49ers stance / anti – A’s and Raiders, coupled with their older demographic and at times arrogant nature, had always rubbed me the wrong way. Being a product of the East Bay, and growing up loving the A’s, Raiders and Sharks didn’t help KNBR in the polls within my heart either.

So I made the jump to 95.7 The Game, and haven’t looked back ( with the exception of Tom Tolbert ) Does the quality of content on FM leave something to be desired? Sure, but I like the direction of the station and a few of the hosts, it’s refreshing to have a place to talk A’s, Sharks and Raiders and who doesn’t love the underdog?

So imagine my surprise when I heard that The Razor would make an appearance on “The Drive” with with Brandon Tierney and Eric Davis, and he’d be on for a full hour!

With rumors of “The Game” poaching the ranks within KNBR, I thought that Barbieri’s appearance would mark his decision to join the ranks of 95.7, which would certainly add more spice and throw gas onto the fire that is the battle of the airwaves in Northern California.

I was excited to hear from Barbieri, and hoped that the interview would be a momentous one.

After listening to the hour long segment, I left with more questions and less closure than I had going into the interview.

What I had hoped was a brief yet fiery dismantling of the cronies at KNBR, instead turned into a long drawn out session of complaining and rambling, with little to nothing in the way of cement evidence or wrongdoing. Ralph took the opportunity to try and drag the higher ups at KNBR through the mud, including Lee Hammer but instead ended up sounding confused, old, and without direction.

His voice giving out didn’t help, maybe rescheduling the interview might have been a better idea, in fact the whole interview didn’t have much of a purpose to be honest.

How his lawyer could have possibly advised this appearance is beyond me. She must not like to win, because Barbieri sounded weak and listless instead of strong and assertive, and was not what I was expecting.

Worse of all? Barbieri even whiffed when offered the chance to say goodbye to the legions of fans he had over the course of his illustrious career. Given the chance to say goodbye correctly, Barbieri instead rambled on, until faking a mistake in his “Angels” signoff line by uttering KNBR instead of The Game.

I mean Tierney and Davis couldn’t have been more accommodating, and literally served it up to Ralph on a golden platter and instead Ralph talked about shoes….

I’ll be following the progress of his lawsuit, because well…. I don’t like KNBR and the “peninsula” attitude, I don’t like big corporations, and further dislike the manner in which the company ( hell, ANY company ) dismisses a 28 year employee in such a disgraceful manner.

Good luck Ralph, I will miss you and I wish the best to you and your son but I wish you took the time on “The Drive” to say goodbye properly.

The Source :

Bay Area Sports Guy 

San Jose Sharks trade for Brad Stuart’s rights – Win, Lose or Draw?

In an early and surprising move, the San Jose Sharks sent forward Andrew Murray and a conditional seventh-round draft pick to the Detroit Red Wings for the rights to unrestricted free agent defenseman Brad Stuart ( according to CSN Bay Area )

Brad Stuart Vitals :

Brad Stuart, Defenseman #23
32 Years Old (November 6, 1979)
6’2″, 215 lbs
12 Full NHL Seasons (876 career regular season games played) – the last four seasons and change with Detroit
Drafted 3rd overall in 1998 by the San Jose Sharks

While it may appear on the surface that the Sharks win in this lopsided trade, the acquisition ( pending a signed contract ) of Stuart will most certainly raise more questions than solve them.

Before weighing in on the move, let’s be clear in that while this wasn’t a “hockey” trade and the Red Wings most likely weren’t going to bring Stuart back, it’s still a huge win for Doug Wilson and a win for the Red Wings as well.

After all, Holland moving Stuart for almost little to nothing surely reveals the level of interest in re-upping with the Red Wings.

While Detroit GM Ken Holland may have landed some late round keepers, it’s safe to assume that this move was done for Stuart, who wanted to be back with his family, given the likelihood of Murray making the Red Wings roster ( little to none ).

While Stuart is on the wrong side of 30 and was never a fluid skater to begin with, he brings depth, experience and ability on the PK. Brad Stuart, had six goals and 15 assists in 81 games last season, while posting a solid +16 rating while leading the Red Wings in hits 177.

Most importantly, he can be counted on from day one to step in and help correct a horrible penalty kill unit that floundered last season.

Sharks Win 

  • On the Penalty Kill – Stuart is more than capable of being a rock on the penalty kill unit, having logged 257:16 of penalty kill minutes.
  • Depth – Stuart allows the Sharks to roll multiple different pairings, depending on which Sharks stay and go. Boyle, Stuart, Vlasic, Murray, Burns is a pretty good top 5 so far.
  • Experience – Stuart has been through many battles and knows what it takes to win in the postseason. His role and experience can do wonders for youngsters on the team like Justin Braun.
  • While he’s not really known for it, Stuart can lay the wood and do it in crucial situations :
Sharks Lose 
  • Brad Stuart is on the wrong side of 30, and won’t add to overall team speed. In other words, he’s not going to be taking a puck on a  Drew Doughty end-to-end rush anytime soon.
  • Stuart allowed a team high 30 PPGA, shorthanded goals against as a defenseman.
  • Stuart was also second worse on the team in PPGA/30
  • Stuart didn’t look like himself late last season for the Winged Wheel, and struggled against Nashville with a -5 rating in the playoffs.
Sharks Draw?
  • Dan Boyle, Marc-Edouard Vlasic, Douglas Murray, Brent Burns and Justin Braun are penciled into the defensive pairings, could someone be on the outside looking in? ( more on that later )
  • Stuart’s signing means it’s unlikely the Sharks get involved in the Suter Sweepstakes.

With the expected signing of Stuart, you can bet that the Sharks blueline will look a lot tougher next year. Paired with Burns, Boyle or Vlasic would be a terrific duo with Stuart on the backend, the problem is will someone be moved?

The obvious target is fan favorite Douglas Murray, who looked a step too slow last year and struggled through injuries. And at 2.5 million a year may be priced too high for a bottom pairing defenseman, but priced just right for a trade scenario.

While Crankshaft may be the target and may end up being moved, I think the bolder move would be finding a trade partner for Dan Boyle. He’s still a high impact defender who can move the puck and add punch to a powerplay.

Boyle is signed through 2014 and is being paid almost $7 million a year, and will be 36 this upcoming year. After June 12, 2012 Boyle’s NTC has an exclusion that allows the club to move him to any one of the NHL teams, outside of a select eight that Boyle can dictate.

He’s a natural leader, a saavy puck handler and has been a terrific leader in the locker room for years….. But it’s time to move him while the Sharks still can and maximize the return.

My take?

It’s a huge win for the Sharks, let’s not try to confuse the issue. It would be nice to see Stuart come in, and start laying the wood and taking the team by the horns. If he is a first or second pairing defender that can eat 20+ minutes a night and play serious minutes on the pk, it’s a huge win. While many Sharks fans are quickly jumping on the negative bandwagon, saying that Stuart doesn’t hit anyone despite being having a huge frame, I say who cares?

Even if he reverts back to the big young defenseman who didn’t like to hit people, as I remember him last in teal, it’s still a big win.

Mike Rathje part II? a little harsh Sharks Fans.

Bottom line? trading A. Murray (a UFA) and a 2014 7th isn’t like giving up a roster asset, so little of value was spent to have exclusive negotiating rights.

Go Sharks.

Case Studies : Prepping Big Red for 9-5 Madness

We’ve given Big Red a proper cleaning and in preparation of the next 9-5 Madness at Vic Hubbard, we’ve decided to finally get off our behinds and get some work done.

We’ll be adding a RPC valve cover kit and repair the current spark plug wire issues on the SBC.

Damage from headers and broken plastic guides

We’ll be using Taylor 98069 Spark plug wires to replace the spark plug wires on Big   Red.

Next we use RPC R6039 to help add a nice polished look to our engine bay as well as arrange the new spark plug wires in a manner that will help protect the wires from heat damage.

This accent piece works great for any SBC especially with the front 2 wires, as it gives just enough curve and cushion to push it ahead of the header. Heat and stress cracking can cause problems as shown below :

After a few minutes, we have the guides on and wires crimped down and run.

These things are off the chain!

Next up, we install an Edelbrock Endurashine intake manifold plenum, a new Holley Double Pumper carb – part number HLY-0-4778S and dressing up the engine bay further in preparation of Vic Hubbard’s next 9-5 Madness Car Show.

Happy Cruising!