Tag:San Jose Sharks
Posted on: August 7, 2011 12:29 pm
By: Adam Gretz
MINNESOTA SENDS SHEPPARD TO SAN JOSE For the third time this summer the Minnesota Wild and San Jose Sharks completed a trade, with the latest one being a relatively minor transaction. On Saturday night the Wild sent forward James Sheppard to the the San Jose Sharks in exchange for a third-round draft pick in 2013. Sheppard was the ninth overall pick in 2006 and has been a disappointment thus far, having scored 11 goals in 224 NHL games.
DID THE FURRIES BREAK SOME NHL NEWS REGARDING THE 2012 DRAFT? Word has quickly spread over the past couple of weeks that the 2012 NHL Entry Draft could be held in Pittsburgh, and this past week the rumors managed to take a turn for the absurd. Ryan Kennedy of The Hockey News points out that the rescheduling of a Furry convention (you know, the people that dress up like animals), which was supposed to take place in Pittsburgh the same weekend as the NHL Draft, could be a sign that the draft is returning to Pittsburgh for the first time since 1997. The city asked the Furries to reschedule due to an opportunity to host a rare event its wanted to host for several years, which is assumed to be the NHL Draft. IceBurgh would approve.
LEBDA HITS THE WAIVER WIRE According to Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet, the Nashville Predators placed defenseman Brett Lebda on unconditional waivers on Saturday, perhaps so they can buy him out. Lebda spent last season with the Toronto Maple Leafs where he scored one goal in 41 games, and was traded to the Predators, along with forward Robert Slaney, this summer in a deal that sent Matthew Lombardi and Cody Franson to Toronto.
WHEN GLOBAL ECONOMICS AND HOCKEY COLLIDE In case you were wondering how the S&P's downgrade on US debt could impact the NHL (don't be afraid to admit it, you know you were asking), Dirk Hoag of On The Forecheck has some possible answers. Interesting read.
Photo: Getty Images
Posted on: August 3, 2011 1:59 pm
Edited on: August 3, 2011 2:42 pm
How's that old saying go: One man's trash is another man's treasure?
A day after the New Jersey Devils parted ways with Colin White (and Trent Hunter) through a buyout, White has already been scooped up. David Pollack of the San Jose Mercury News says the Sharks have signed White to a one-year deal for a price of $1 million.
"A stopper, a physical guy who's also an excellent penalty killer -- you can never have too many of those," Sharks GM Doug Wilson said of White.
White will actually make $3 million next season, $2 million coming at the expense of the Devils after his buyout. For the Sharks it's a very solid investment, getting a servicable player for the defensive corps for a small price tag.
White, a career Devil on the blue line, figured to have a market considering he's not completely long in the tooth. At 33, he figures to still have some gas in the tank. He hasn't been exactly the same player since suffering a very serious eye injury in the 2007-08 season, but he's still a very capable defensive player. In 2008-09, he posted a very solid plus-18.
The Sharks made upgrading their blue line a priority this offseason, giving up a pretty steep price in Devin Setoguchi, a former first-round pick and this year's top pick for All-Star Brent Burns, who they recently signed to an extension. They also brough in James Vandermeer to take some of the minutes. Getting more a bruiser to beef up the back is where White would fit in with his physical style.
Photo: Getty Images
Posted on: August 1, 2011 11:34 am
Edited on: August 1, 2011 12:20 pm
By: Adam Gretz
The San Jose Sharks and Minnesota Wild made two huge trades over the summer. Most recently, the clubs swapped big-money forwards Dany Heatley and Martin Havlat. Before that blockbuster was completed, the Sharks acquired offensive-defenseman Brent Burns in a deal that sent Devin Setoguchi to Minnesota at the NHL draft, giving San Jose another scoring threat from the blue line to go along with veteran Dan Boyle.
On Monday, the Sharks announced that they signed Burns, who is still only 26 years old, to a five-year contract extension. According to David Pollack of the San Jose Mercury News, the deal is worth a total of $28.5 million, which comes out to a cap hit of $5.75 million per season.
Said general manager Doug Wilson in a statement released by the team, "We are thrilled that Brent has stepped forward and made long-term commitment to the San Jose Sharks, his new teammates and our fans. When we acquired Brent, it was our intention to make sure that he remained an important piece of our organization moving forward and we are very pleased that we have been able to do that. As an elite-level defenseman who is just entering his prime, we are looking forward to meshing Brent’s skills with our existing core group.”
Burns is coming off the best season of his career offensively having scored 17 goals to go with 29 assists in 82 games. A former first-round pick by the Wild back in 2003, Burns spent the first seven years of his career in Minnesota and has flashed the elite-level ability Wilson talked about many times throughout his career. The biggest concern the Sharks and their fans should have with Burns is the fact he's had a history of injuries in recent years, including a concussion during the 2009 season.
He's played fewer than 60 games twice in the past four years.
When he's on the ice, however, he's a true goal-scoring threat having scored at least 15 goals during the 2010-11 and 2007-08 seasons. He maintained a similar pace during his injury-shortened 2008-09 season.
The only defensemen to score more goals last season were Atlanta's Dustin Byfuglien (20) and Anaheim's Lubomir Visnovsky (18).
Photo: Getty Images
Posted on: July 12, 2011 8:10 pm
Edited on: July 12, 2011 9:34 pm
By: Adam Gretz
During the 2005 season goal-scoring reached a level that we hadn't seen during the clutch-and-grab era prior to the work stoppage, with the league averaging 6.10 goals per game. The leading goal-scorer that season: Jonathan Cheechoo of the San Jose Sharks with a career-high 56, making him one of the just 91 different players in NHL history to reach the 50-goal plateau.
He will forever be a part of that club, but he has never come close to repeating those numbers and is unlikely to ever do so again.
According to Blues writer Andy Strickland, St. Louis is taking a shot on the 30-year-old winger having signed him to a one-year, two-way contract on Tuesday evening, perhaps hoping to catch some sort of Lightning in a bottle. Strickland reports Cheechoo's contract will pay him $600,000 if he plays in the NHL, and $225,000 if he plays in the minors.
During his breakout 2005 performance, Cheechoo spent a great deal of time on a line with Joe Thornton -- one of the best playmaking centers of this era -- who the Sharks acquired early in the season. Cheechoo scored 49 of his 56 goals in the 57 games following that trade, and then went on to score a very respectable 37 the following season. Since then, however, it's been a steady and consistent decline across the board in nearly every statistical category. Just consider the raw numbers: after scoring 56 goals in 82 games during the 2005 season he's managed to score just 77 goals in the following 272 games.
During his most recent stint in the NHL he scored just five goals in 61 games with the Ottawa Senators after he was acquired in the trade that sent Dany Heatley to San Jose.
He spent last season playing with the Worcest Sharks of the AHL and scored 18 goals in 55 games.
Photo: Getty Images
Posted on: July 6, 2011 10:28 am
Edited on: July 6, 2011 1:46 pm
By Brian Stubits
DOUGH FOR DOUGHNUTS: The most talked about RFA has been Steven Stamkos and it isn't close. But there's a certain young star defenseman in L.A. who is currently without a contract and is restricted, too. From the sounds of it, that won't be changing for some time. Kings GM Dean Lombardi told the Los Angeles Times that "this could take awhile" in regards to the negotiations to re-sign Drew Doughty. Now, it is unlikely -- winning the lottery unlikely -- Doughty will play anywhere but Tinseltown in the foreseeable future, but nobody likes these negotiations to drag on. The talks could get a serious spur when Shea Weber gets his new contract in Nashville.
THE L WORD: The last thing anybody in sports wants to hear, especially in hockey, is talk about another lockout. With the NFL and NBA currently in labor battles (although they haven't cost either league a game or anything truly substantial yet) the NHL is OK for next season. But after that, the CBA runs out, and we could have a whole new set of issues up for contention. Lyle Richardson at Spector's Hockey says the fight this time wouldn't be about leveling the playing field, but about saving the playing field (i.e. poorly managed/endangered franchises), something the other owners might not be willing to do.
AHL SHAKEUP: Not only did we see a carousel on the AHL affiliation circus this offseason with numerous teams taking on a new minor-league city, but the AHL announced it will have a new look to it, too. A realignment of divisions was released yesterday as well as a new playoff format. It will look very similar to the NHL's version, just with a first round being a best-of-5 series instead of seven. Check out the layout here.
RISKY BUSINESS: Martin Havlat, Brent Burns, Michal Handzus, Jim Vandermeer. That's who the Sharks have brought in while losing some of the bigger parts of their back-to-back Western Conference runnerups. Typically teams don't make such drastic changes after being so close. Although this team has been together with the same core for some time, and that's the most they have to show for it. But I digress. Mark Purdy of the San Jose Mercury News says there is no denying GM Doug Wilson is undertaking one massive risk with all these moves.
BURKE BURN PART II: Yesterday we pointed out how Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke was angry with criticism he received from a Toronto Sun columnist for spending Canada Day -- which is also the opening of free agency -- in Afghanistan visiting the troops. Now, a fellow writer at the Sun is coming to his co-worker Steve Simmons' defense after a slew of negative responses, pointing out, rightfully, it was just the man's opinion.
ANTTI-NHL: OK, so he might not have anything against the NHL, but his name works so well! Former Minnesota Wild forward Antti Miettinen is apparently not coming back to North America next season, instead signing a contract with a team in the KHL, according to Andy Strickland.He was one of the better free agents still left, having scored 16 goals and 35 points last season (20-22=42 the season before).
Posted on: July 5, 2011 11:30 am
Edited on: July 5, 2011 11:49 am
BURKE BURN: If you happened to catch the free-agency coverage on TSN (Versus was carrying the stream) you probably noticed Toronto Sun columnist Steve Simmons more or less lambasting Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke for not being present on the opening day of free agency, which included the team's meeting with Brad Richards. Instead, he was spending Canada Day with troops in Afghanistan. Burke, who had plenty of communications with everybody back in Canada via cell phone and Skype, is offended by the criticism, saying he would do it again. The National Post has the whole story.
RICHARDS OR POORER? Since Brad Richards elected to sign with the Rangers, it's been a lot of euphoria in Blueshirt land as they finally got a top-line center they hope can give them close to the production that messiah Messier once did. But it's not all rainbows and sunshine. Blueshirt Banter reins in the party on Broadway a bit by looking at the downsides to Richards, going deep into the world of statistics to do so.
COLE AS GOOD AS GOLD: As you might have gathered by now, this was not a deep free-agent class by any means, so it was tough for teams to fill their needs. But Montreal Canadiens blog Lions in Winter thinks the team did a fantastic job of taking care of its principle need: a top-six power forward. Outside of the pipedream of signing Richards, the conclusion is that Erik Cole was about the best fit they could find.
HEAT-ING UP? Dany Heatley had 26 goals and 38 assists for the San Jose Sharks last season. For most players in the league, those are great numbers. For a guy that has shown he can score 50 goals in a season? A little lackluster. So he gets a fresh start in Minnesota, a team that will be looking for every ounce of scoring it can find. Michael Russo of the Minneapolis Star Tribune takes a look at the new partnership between the two and how they all hope it brings a return to form for Heatley.
TORRES' TREK: Raffi Torres is the son of a Mexican father and Peruvian mother who hails from Canada and has red hair. All make for one interesting player ... and determined. Torres, who just signed with the Phoenix Coyotes, gained that proverbial chip on his shoulder growing up facing the prejudices of playing hockey as a Latino. The Arizona Republic explains.
By Brian Stubits
Posted on: July 3, 2011 11:16 pm
Edited on: July 3, 2011 11:45 pm
Martin Havlat waived his no-trade clause with the Minnesota Wild and has been traded to the San Jose Sharks for Dany Heatley. Each team was relatively quiet in the first few days of free agency, but this trade makes about as much noise as any signing either team could have made.
“Marty is a player that we have had an interest in for a long time," Sharks GM Doug Wilson said. “He can play either wing and brings creativity and breakaway speed to our group of top-six forwards."
It is the second monster trade between the two teams in as many weeks. You might remember at the draft the Sharks acquired Brent Burns and a second-round pick from Minnesota in exchange for Devin Setoguchi, Charlie Coyle and the Sharks' first-round selection, which the Wild used to take center Zack Phillips.
"We are excited to add Dany Heatley, one of the top goal scorers in the NHL," Wild GM Chuck Fletcher said. "He is a quality player who's averaged more than a point a game in his nine-year career.”
In Havlat the Sharks get Minnesota's co-leading scorer from last season as he tallied 22 goals with 40 assists with the Wild. Heatley heads to Minnesota having scored 26 goals for the Sharks last season with 38 assists.
Both players are aged 30, had very similar numbers and both are top-six forwards. So what's the point?
For San Jose it saves $2.5 million in salary cap space, giving the Sharks some flexibility to make an additional move or two if they want/need to. Oh, and there was this part of it from Wilson: There was a window built into Heatley's contract that allowed the trade to happen. The window just opened. So more or less, the Sharks traded him as soon as they could, reading between the lines. Heatley hasn't exactly earned a great reputation over the years having asked out of his two previous stops in Atlanta and Ottawa.
“We truly appreciate everything that Dany brought to our organization. He is a tremendous professional," Wilson said.
Meanwhile, Minnesota doesn't have an issue with cap space and it gets a player who is a bit more of a natural scorer (he has reached the 50-goal mark a couple of times) as it continues to retool a team that has sagged offensively since Marian Gaborik for New York. Plus he brings a familiarity with Setoguchi as the two figure to get ice time together.
Havlat and Heatley played together in 2005-06 with the Ottawa Senators.
By Brian Stubits
Posted on: July 1, 2011 10:46 am
Edited on: July 7, 2011 5:31 pm
It took more than 24 hours, but the Toronto Maple Leafs, no strangers to free-agent signings, spent their first dollars on a free agent, signing Tim Connolly for two years, $9.5 million, according to Darren Dreger of TSN.
The Maple Leafs were among the favorites to sign Brad Richards, who ended up going to the Rangers. GM Brian Burke took some criticism for not being present at the presentation to Richards, instead spending Canada Day overseas with Canadian soldiers in Kandahar, Afghanistan.
The Leafs needed to find a center and wanted it to be Richards. Once they missed out, they turned their attention straight to Connolly, most recently with the Sabres. The 10-year veteran has spent the past eight seasons in Buffalo, notching career highs of 18 goals (in 2008-09) and 65 points (2009-10). He is coming off a 13-goal, 29-assist season.
It seems to be a bit high for Connolly, $4.75 million annually, but Toronto had money to spend and needed to grab a center. Plus, the risk is minimized a bit with just a two-year contract instead of something in the four- or five-year range.
This week's moves
By Brian Stubits
Tags: 2011 Free Agency, Anaheim Ducks, Boston Bruins, Buffalo Sabres, Calgary Flames, Carolina Hurricanes, Chicabo Blackhawks, Colorado Avalanche, Columbus Blue Jackets, Dallas Stars, Detroit Red Wings, Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers, Los Angeles Kings, Minnesota Wild, Montreal Canadiens, Nashville Predators, New Jersey Devils, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Ottawa Senators, Philadelphia Flyers, Phoenix Coyotes, Pittsburgh Penguins, San Jose Sharks, St. Louis Blues, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, Vancouver Canucks, Washington Capitals, Winnipeg Jets