San Jose Sharks
|2016-17 season: 46-29-7, 99 points
Lost to Edmonton 4-2 in the
Western Conference Quarterfinals
|Head Coach: Peter DeBoer (2015)|
|3rd Place Pacific Division||General Manager: Doug Wilson (2003)|
|6th Place Western Conference||AHL Affiliate: San Jose Barracuda
ECHL Affiliate: Allen Americans
|Draft Position: Will have the 19th pick in the draft|
|POS||Age||Name||Games Started||W/L Record||Shutouts||GAA||Save %|
Trades Made During the Season
|What They Acquired||Team They Traded With||In Exchange For|
|RW Jannik Hansen||Vancouver Canucks||F Nikolay Goldobin
Conditional 2017 4th RD Pick
|RW Zack Stortini
RW Buddy Robinson
2017 7th RD Pick
|Ottawa Senators||F Tommy Wingels|
Impending Free Agents
|POS||Age||Name||2016-17 Cap Hit|
- The Sharks have six picks in the upcoming draft but just one before the 5th round. Their NHL roster is now largely an older group, especially at forward. They have quite a few young talented defense prospects in the minors but need help at forward, especially at center.
What I Said About Them Before the Season
- I projected for the Sharks to regress this season compared to last, largely because I thought that they overachieved last year. Not having a truly elite goalscorer and relying on their blueline for a large portion of their offense is risky and I thought that could cause a problem for the Sharks this season. I wrote that the front office needed to do whatever possible in order to extend Burns during the season and not allow him to get to free agency. I also thought that the front office needs to work on determining the team’s plan going forward as both Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau are free agents this offseason. I predicted that the Sharks would return to the playoffs this season but that they wouldn’t advance to the later rounds of the playoffs.
- Failure – San Jose went from being in game six of the Stanley Cup Finals to losing in the first round to an Edmonton team that hadn’t been in the playoffs in a decade. The Sharks are now the oldest roster in the league and struggled to keep up with speedy teams such as Edmonton. They regressed in nearly every category compared to last season with the biggest drop offs taking place in shooting percentage, goals for, and powerplay conversion rate. They generally became a more defensively-responsible team compared to the teams of the past decade and struggled to score goals as a result. I can’t tell if this was an intentional plan to work with the future rosters they will have or if it was simply the result of forwards aging. Either way, they struggled this season in a lot of areas and it ended up costing the team in the playoffs. Perhaps the biggest failure is that this may have been the last chance for this roster group to win that elusive Stanley Cup.
- Next season’s Sharks team could look a great deal different than this season’s. Veterans Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau are both free agents this offseason and have been members of the team for the past decade. Both have lost a step in recent seasons but are still productive and have the skillsets to help any team in the league. I think that re-signing both of them to short-term and cheaper deals could be good moves for the team and I feel fairly confident that both would take discounts to stay in San Jose. I actually think that there is some argument for the front office to do a minor tear down of this roster and rebuild with their true core. Trading away players like Paul Martin, Marc-Edouard Vlasic, and Joel Ward and recoup some assets to rebuild their farm system could go a long way to help the future of this franchise. They could build around Logan Couture, Joe Pavelski, Tomas Hertl, and Brent Burns, since I doubt any team would take on his new contract. Although I would consider pursuing this idea, I highly doubt that the Sharks would entertain it considering the resources they have spent on their current roster. If they want to continue moving forward with their current roster construction, then I think that the Sharks need to find a way to add depth on their defense and if they decide to not re-sign Marleau or Thornton then they’ll need to find a way to replace that offense.
*All stats and information came from hockey-reference.com, rosterresource.com, spotrac.com, NHL.com, hockeydb.com, capfriendly.com, tsn.ca, and eliteprospects.com*