• Sharks' Ward To Play With Couture And Marleau

    News: Joel Ward is expected to line up with Logan Couture and Patrick Marleau to start the season, according to CSN's Kevin Kurz.
    Analysis: Joel Ward, even though he's 34 now, is being set up to succeed at the start of the season with offensively potent linemates. Be sure not to overestimate Ward, but monitor the Sharks' depth chart very carefully since there could be some serious hidden value here if he's lining up beside guys (like Couture, Marleau, Joe Pavelski, or Joe Thornton) who know how to put the puck in the net. The ninth-year NHLer is no stranger to the scoresheet himself, as he racked up 49 points two seasons ago with the Capitals.
  • Role On Middle Lines Likely Waits For Sharks' Ward

    News: Joel Ward is expected to slot in on the Sharks' second or third line during the upcoming season, CSN Bay Area's Kevin Kurz reports.
    Analysis: Joel Ward occasionally saw time with Alex Ovechkin and Niklas Backstrom last season, but with Joe Pavelski locked in as the Sharks' top-line right wing, such a favorable role won't await the winger in San Jose. That said, a gig next to second-line center and rising star Logan Couture would be a good consolation prize for Ward, whose reputation as a clutch scorer and power-play asset may be enough for him to leapfrog the team's other uninspiring depth forwards.
  • Sharks Sign Ward To Three-Year Deal

    News: Joel Ward signed a three-year, $9.825 million contract with the Sharks on Friday, CSN Bay Area's Kevin Kurz reports.
    Analysis: After the Capitals replaced him with Justin Williams on the first day of free agency, Joel Ward ended up finding a home on the West Coast, where he'll join a veteran forward corps. Ward skated primarily on the third line with the Capitals in 2014-15, notching 19 goals and 34 points in 82 games. Historically, Ward has saved his best work for the postseason (14 goals, 21 assists in 53 playoff games), where the Sharks have infamously failed to come up in the clutch in recent seasons. The 34-year-old Ward probably isn't alone going to get them over the hump or even back in the playoffs, but he'll at least provide the Sharks with a serviceable third-line sniper.
  • Ward's Three Points Not Enough For Caps In Game 6

    News: Joel Ward scored a goal and assisted on the Caps' other two Game 6 tallies Sunday, but it wasn't enough in a 4-3 loss to the Rangers.
    Analysis: Joel Ward helped power a third-period Washington comeback attempt by assisting on Evgeny Kuznetsov's goal, then scoring his own less than three minutes later, but the hole was too deep. A surprising point producer in this year's playoffs, Ward had gone quiet over the last three games -- scoreless with a minus-1 rating, though he had put five shots on goal in Friday's Game 5 loss. Nonetheless, he's now put up nine points over 13 games in these playoffs.
  • Caps' Ward: Six Points In Last Seven Games

    News: Joel Ward's postseason production continued Saturday when he picked up an assist in the Capitals' 3-2 loss to the Rangers. He now has six points in his last seven games.
    Analysis: Clutch -- that's the best way to describe his work these days. He has a history of going on scoring streaks and he certainly seems to enjoy playing alongside Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom. We sure hope you snapped him up in your playoff pool. He's been worth every penny.
  • Caps' Ward Pots Clutch Winner In Game 1

    News: Joel Ward fired the puck past Henrik Lundqvist with 1.3 seconds remaining Thursday in Game 1 to deliver a 2-1 victory over the Rangers.
    Analysis: That stunner from Joel Ward dealt a harsh blow to the Rangers, and it's part of what's been a solid playoff run for him -- he's got five points in his last six games, including goals in two straight. Seeing ice time alongside Alex Ovechkin certainly has its benefits.
  • Ward Nets Goal In Game 7 Win

    News: Joel Ward scored his first goal of the playoffs during Washington's 2-1 win over the Islanders on Monday.
    Analysis: Joel Ward finished the series with a goal and three assists in seven games. Working on the top line with Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom, and garnering play on the team's second power-play unit, Ward has some excellent sleeper value in playoff pools as the Capitals ready for a second-round matchup with the Rangers.
  • Caps' Ward Has Three-Game Point Streak

    News: Joel Ward recorded his third straight game with an assist during Washington's 5-1 rout of the Islanders in Thursday's Game 5.
    Analysis: Joel Ward has a reputation for being a clutch playoff performer from his days in Nashville, and headed for unrestricted free agency this summer, he's again heating up at the right time. Playing his even strength minutes alongside Alex Ovechkin and getting work on the second power-play unit, Ward has some significant sleeper value in playoff pools if the Capitals can advance to the second round.
  • Caps' Ward Sets Up Score In Game 4 Overtime Win

    News: Joel Ward collected an overtime assist in Tuesday's Game 4 win against the Islanders.
    Analysis: Joel Ward dropped the puck off to Nicklas Backstrom, who then skated toward center ice, looped around, and ended the game. The Canadian winger has earned more than 20 minutes of ice time in consecutive games, and seems to be an underrated play in most daily games contests and playoff pools.
  • Caps' Ward Gets Two In Win

    News: Joel Ward scored two goals -- one on the power play -- Thursday against Montreal, giving him a three-game point streak.
    Analysis: With three markers and an assist over that span, Joel Ward's on a bit of a late-season hot streak now. Never a very significant offensive contributor in the first several years of his career, Ward is now on the verge of his second consecutive 20-goal campaign.