The black cat that gained notoriety by making an appearance Friday before Game 1 of the series between San Jose Sharks and Nashville Predators will soon find a new home.
According to the Sharks, the cat, which has been renamed Joe PAW-velski in honor of captain Joe Pavelski, was retrieved by staff at the SAP Center on Saturday. The team said it is making arrangements to transport the cat to a nearby animal shelter, where it will undergo a full medical exam and microchip scan to determine if it has an owner. If the cat doesn’t have an owner, the Sharks are hoping it will be made available to adoption.
"The amount of interest generated by Joe’s appearance and those wishing to adopt him has been overwhelming,” Sharks CEO John Tortora said in a statement on Sunday. “We want to make sure the cat is safe and healthy and returned to its rightful owner, in the event it has a microchip. If he is indeed a stray, our goal is to find the best home for him with the support of our local animal shelters. If families are interested in adopting 'Joe' but unsuccessful, we strongly encourage you to consider adopting another animal in need of a good home from one of our terrific local animal shelters."
Joe PAW-velski scurried onto the ice during warmups, emerging from the bench on Friday. The cat ran alongside the boards and made its way towards the team’s giant Shark Head before finding an open door. It then ventured beneath the seating stands.
The Sharks weren’t fazed by what could have been a bad omen. They scored five third-period goals en route to a 5-2 victory over the Predators in the series opener. Game 2 goes Sunday night at SAP Center.