San Jose Sharks Season Review

2021-06-15

Back in the off-season when GM Mitchell took over the San Jose Sharks organization he evaluated them as a potential playoff team. Fast forward to now, the Sharks have missed the playoffs by a considerable margin. This Sharks organization has a history of trading away future assets for a win now approach, but the current GM seems to be bucking that trend acquiring picks and prospects. "We went hunting for help now in UFA and found a pretty good piece in Carl Hagelin as evidenced by his team leading 61 points while being defensively responsible." Said GM Mitchell of his off-season. "On the trade front, we moved Buchnevich to Buffalo for Jamie Oleksiak, Martin Kaut and a 2nd rounder which was used to select Cross Hanas, we figured he would replace Buchnevich well" And that looks like a good move with hindsight as Buchnevich struggled to post similar numbers to his replacement Hagelin. To top off the off-season, the Sabres hired one of the top available coaches in Jon Cooper in hopes to at least be in the playoff hunt.

The season started okay, with the Sharks hovering at about .500 and kind of in the playoff hunt, but after the Christmas holidays the team started a downward spiral and the playoff hunt was turning into a pipe dream. The GM turned to the future and traded #1 center Kevin Hayes to Dallas for Par Lindholm, Alex Vlasic and DAL 1st in 2022. Lindholm was then flipped for CHI 3rd in 2021 and PHI 7th in 2021. Next up was future UFA center in Adam Henrique who was moved to the Rangers along with UFA Dman Michal Kempny and 2 5ths in 2021 for prospect and UMN standout Blake McLaughlin, Brendan Lemieux, and Brendan Guhle. The last trade just prior to the deadline saw Zack Smith moved to Colorado for a JS 5th rounder in 2021.

So out was: Kevin Hayes, Par Lindholm, Adam Henrique, Michal Kempny, Zack Smith, NYR 5th 2021 & WPG 5th 2021

In is: Alex Vlasic, Blake McLaughlin, Brendan Lemieux, Brendan Guhle, Dal 1st 2022, CHI 3rd 2021, SJ 5th 2021 and PHI 7th 2021

It's pretty noticable which direction the team will be headed into during the off-season by the moves made during the season. The Sharks have started a rebuild. This was confirmed by the seasons year end meeting with season ticket holders where the GM asked fans for patience during this time. "Obviously we just started here, it's hard to accomplish everything you want to do in a tear down during the season." quipped Mitchell "We have blessings from ownership to change the direction of the team and we are committed to bring competitive hockey back to silicon valley in the not too distant future."

What does the future hold for the Sharks? We've been hearing rumours of a leaked protection list for the Sharks, the team has denied the leak but it shows Goaltender Bobrovsky unprotected which would be huge news. After expansion draft will come the EHE entry draft. The teams 1st rounder was owned by the Florida Panthers when the current GM was hired, that will put a pretty big damper on the rebuilding team. The Sharks do own the following picks though in the draft: STL 2nd, CHI 3rd, SJ 5th, SJ 6th, PHI 7th and SJ 7th.

Look for the team to aggressively try and move out star winger Vladimir Tarasenko, star goalie Sergei Bobrovsky and star defender Josh Morrissey. Though finding someone willing to pay up for these stars has been tough so far. "We had lots of people ask on Morrissey, actually most were kicking tires on him. When GM's found out they couldn't get a young stud defender for dirt cheap talks dried up quite fast." Said the GM. "I expect talks for Vlad and Bob will go a little better in the off-season as I don't think we're asking for the world for them."

Good Luck to all the teams in the playoffs and see you all on the draft floor!