S.J. SHARKIE Meet a MASCOT
S.J. SHARKIE | SAN JOSE SHARKS
HE MAY HAVE AN unoriginal name, but S.J. Sharkie has become one of the most recognizable mascots in the NHL. Debuting in January 1992, Sharkie has been a ring bearer at a wedding, a date to senior prom and was even run into by Theoren Fleury after a game. He also took center stage in one of the most memorable mascot moments of all-time. Before a game against Detroit in March 1999, Sharkie was tasked with propelling down from the arena rafters to hype up the fans. It was a great stunt – until his jersey became entangled with the rope and equipment. Sharkie was stranded 40 feet above the Wings’ crease, dangling. But even as rubber mats were being stacked below to provide a cushion if the rope gave way, the situation didn’t stop Sharkie from throwing his arms in the air in an effort to excite the crowd. The game was delayed for 20 minutes as the arena crew worked to help him get down, while Sharkie remained suspended in the air as the starting lineups were announced and Steve Yzerman, among others, laughed below. Eventually he was raised back up to the catwalk and untangled, which garnered cheering from the crowd, but not before creating one of the strangest pre-game events in NHL history.