1. Stay loose
You can grip a stick too hard just as easily as you can a bat. All that locker room talk counts for nothing if you can't stay loose and play on the field (or the ice) Don't over prepare, don't get tight, just be ready, then deliver.
2. "Be young enough and stupid enough to win."*
I honestly think this is something the Sharks get too caught up in. It's always about the veteran presence in the room, closed door meetings when the team falters, too much stress, tension, shaken enough to crumble under the wright of (very heavy) expectations because you've lost before and it sucks.
Take a hint from the rookies and play for the hell of it.
4. Believe in your team and yourself (even when you suck)
Rough starts don't have to lead to rough endings. Play through it and never forget that you could win. (Keep that Jumbo slide in mind)
5. 5 games back with 9 left? NO PROBLEM! (aka down isn't necessarily out)
The A's had the ability to decide their own fate at the end of this season, just like the Sharks did last year. They played for the hell of it, for the fun of it, and ignored the critics whereas the Sharks seemed to play with the weight of the possible failure on their backs. It crushed them. Don't let the odds defeat you before the game even starts.
*quote care of 95.7 The Game's post game show. It's all about not over thinking and just playing the game the best you can.