The San Jose Sharks finished last season with a record of 45-27-10 and 100 points. They came third in the Pacific Division, clinching a berth in the Stanley Cup playoffs. The Vegas Golden Knights ended the Shark’s year in six games in round two.
The Sharks had a very busy off-season.
San Jose pulled the trigger on the biggest blockbuster in recent NHL memory, acquiring Karlsson (cover photo), a world-class, two-time Norris Trophy winning defenseman, and Perrson. Both were acquired from the Ottawa Senators late in the off-season for Tierney, DeMelo, Norris, Balcers, a 2019 or 2020 first-round pick, a 2019 second-round pick, and two conditional picks. On Sep. 27, Karlsson made his preseason debut for the Sharks. Leading the team with 25:05 time-on-ice, he tallied one assist, a plus-one rating, one shot on goal, one block, two hits, and two penalty minutes.
The Sharks made another deal with the Senators this off-season, acquiring sniper Hoffman, Donaghey, and a 2020 fifth-round pick for Boedker, Bergman, and a 2020 sixth-round pick. Within an hour, the Sharks dealt Hoffman and a 2018 seventh-round pick to the Florida Panthers for a 2019 second-round pick, a 2018 fourth-round pick, and a 2020 fifth-round pick.
On the free-agent front, the Sharks re-signed unrestricted free agent Joe Thornton to a one-year deal worth $5 million and restricted free agent Tomas Hertl to a four-year deal worth $22.5 million. Earlier in the spring, they also re-signed Evander Kane to a seven-year deal worth $49 million.
At the 2018 draft, the Sharks selected defenceman Ryan Merkley 21st overall.
What to Expect
Karlsson is a major addition to the Sharks, who instantly become Stanley Cup contenders in the West. Their line-up has a solid mix of veteran leadership, grit, and skill. Last season, the Sharks power play ranked 16th in the West at 20.6 per cent. Expect that percentage to increase with Burns and Karlsson quarterbacking these units. The Sharks will be a formidable opponent for many teams this year.
Photo Credit: Sportsnet.ca
Billy Morrison is a NHL Writer for Full Press Coverage. Follow Billy on Twitter @BillyMorrison01.
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