Now that the current season has ended for the San Jose Sharks, I can’t help but wonder what changes will happen between now and the start of the 2011-2012 season? Doug Wilson, the General Manager, has the daunting task of sorting through the line-up and deciding who can stay and who can go. After his hockey club was knocked out in the Western Conference Finals for the second season in a row, it is clear GM Wilson will need to shake up the team. How will he make changes to fulfill the San Jose Shark’s goal and still keep within the salary cap? It’s not easy.
Doug no doubt will spend time with his staff, going over stats, game tapes, and roster sheets of Unrestricted Free Agents (UFAs) and Restricted Free Agents (RFAs). They’ll look at salaries, line production, long term and short term contracts, and ages of players. Of course, every fan has his or her favorite players. I hated to see Nabakov leave the team, but then I was depressed when Irbe left, too. I’ve tried to monitor ex-Shark players; for example, I was pleased Friesen won a Cup with the Devils (he was a favorite of my son when he was growing up).
Just for fun, I’ve listed the current roster with some fun stats and my take on if the player will stay or go. This isn’t scientific; I’m going by the stats (regular season). The contract data came from:
General ranking stats data came from The Hockey News (for regular season):
Captain Joe Thornton ended the season ranked #24 in points overall (G-21, A-49, P-70), the #12 ranked Center, and the #24 ranked Forward. He played in 80 games, had 149 shots and 47 PIM. Jumbo Joe played in 18 play-off games, scoring 3 goals and 14 assists – 2 of his goals were game-winners. He took 48 shots and 16 penalty minutes. Thornton signed a multi-year deal and won’t be a UFA until the 2014-2015 season.
Dan Boyle came up #97 (G-9, A-41, P-50) on the overall points list and #8 on the defense list. Dan had 199 shots and 67 penalty minutes from 76 games. Dan played in 18 games, making contact with the puck 67 times. During play-offs, Dan had 4 goals (1 game winner) and 12 assists, along with 8 penalties. Dan is under a multi-year deal until the 2014-2015 season when he becomes an UFA.
Ryan Clowe ranked #41 on the points(G-24, A-38, P-62), #8 on the LW list, and #40 on the Forwards list. Ryan kept himself busy, with 185 shots and 100 penalty minutes from 75 games. Ryan suited up for 17 play-off games, had 39 shots on net, scoring 6 goals and earning 9 assists. Ryan wasn’t afraid to push his weight around, earning 32 minutes in the sin bin. Ryan will become an UFA at the 2013-2014 season.
Logan Couture had a great season, ranking #66 on the points list, (G-32, A-24, P-56) #2 on the rookies points, #30 as a Center, and #63 as a Forward. Logan played in 79 games, making 253 shots and 41 penalty minutes. Logan saw ice time in 18 play-off games. He had 7 goals and 7 assists with 2 penalty minutes & 64 goals on goal. Logan becomes a Restricted Free Agent in the 2012-2013 season.
Patrick Marleau ended the season ranked #16 in points overall (g-37, A-36, P-73), the #3 ranked LW, and the #16th Forward. He played in 82 games, had 279 shots, and had 16 PIM. Patrick played in 18 post-season games, getting the puck past the goalies 7 times and earning 6 assists. He was whistled for 9 penalty minutes, including time for a rare fight. Patrick had 59 shots on goal. Patty has a multi-year contract in place until the 2014-2015 season, where he will then become a UFA.
Devin Setoguchi played in 72 games, ending up ranked #158 on the overall points list (G-22, A-19, P-41), #45 as a Right Wing and #135 as a Forward. Devin took 199 shots and received 37 penalty minutes. Devin joined his fellow workhorses in the play-offs, playing 18 games. He scored 7 goals, including 2 game winners and 3 assists. He had 12 penalty minutes and 65 shots on net. Devin is a Restricted Free Agent. The Sharks can make a matching offer by any other team if they want to keep him. Only four other Sharks made more shots on net than Devin did. Seven other players had higher point totals than Devin earned. Eleven other Sharks had higher penalty minutes. I would resign Devin to limited contract.
Joe Pavelski ranked #34 on the points list from 74 games (G-20, A-46, P-66). Joe was #19 as a Center and #33 as a Forward. To show his strength, Joe had 282 shots and 24 penalty minutes. Joe skated in 18 play-off games, shooting the puck 58 times for 5 goals and 5 assists, including one game-winner. He garnered 10 penalty minutes. Joe is signed through the 2014-2015 season, when he becomes an UFA.
Dany Heatley ended the year ranked #37 on the points list (G-26, A-38, P-64), #9 as a Right Wing, and #36 as a Forward. Dany had 217 shots and 56 penalty minutes. Dany kept busy in his 18 post-season games: 47 shots on goal, only scoring 3 goals and getting 9 assists, he did spend 12 minutes in the penalty box. Dany is under contract through the 2014-2015 season, when he becomes a UFA.
Ian White ranked #296 on the points list (G-4, A-22, P-26) and #63 on the defenseman list. He played in 78 games, making 138 shots and earning 26 penalty minutes. Ian was suited up for 17 games in the post-season. He scored 4 goals and had 22 assists. He is an Unrestricted Free Agent. Eight Sharks aimed at the net more than Ian did. Fourteen Sharks had more penalties than Ian was whistled for. Nine players scored more points at the end of the season. If I was the GM, I would try to keep Ian.
Andrew Desjardins showed he could run with the big boys, ranking #665 on the points list (G-1, A-2, P-3), #93 on the rookies list, #441 on the Forwards list, and #121 as a Left Wing. He played in 17 games, making 12 shots and earning 4 penalty minutes. Andrew played in 3 play-off games, scoring one goal, one assist, and getting one penalty. He took four shots on goal. Andrew is a Restricted Free Agent . I would let Andrew go.
Benn Ferriero ended his season ranked #527 on the points list (G-5, A-4, P-9), #58 on the rookie list, #364 on the Forwards list, and #101 on the Right Wing list. Benn played in 33 games, spending 9 minutes in the penalty box and making 56 shots. Ben was in 8 play-off games, scoring one goal (a game winner) and getting one assist. Ben took 3 shots and spent 6 minutes in the penalty box. Benn is a Restricted Free Agent. I would resign Benn.
Justin Braun finished his season # 490 on the points list (G-2, A-9, P-11), #53 in the rookie standings and #141 on the Defensive list with 28 games played. Justin had 44 shots and 2 penalty minutes. Justin is signed through the 2012-2013 season.
Kyle Wellwood ranked #456 on the points list (G-5, A-8, P-13), #330 on the Forwards list and #116 on the Center list. From 35 games played, Kyle had no penalties but did have 50 shots on goal. He scored 5 goals and earned 8 assists. Kyle is a Restricted Free Agent. If I was GM, I would let Kyle go to open up room in the cap space.
Niclas Wallin was #553 on the points list (G-3, A-5, P-8), #175 on the Defenseman list. He skated in 74 games, being whistled down 46 penalty minutes and getting 86 shots. Niclas scored 3 goals and had 5 assists. Niclas is an Unrestricted Free Agent. I would let Niclas go.
Jason Demers was ranked #316 on the points list (G-2, A-22, P-24), #71 on the Defenseman list. Jason played in 75 games, getting 105 shots and 28 penalties. Jason is signed through the 2013-2014 season.
Marc-Edouard Vlasic was #378 on the points list (G-4, A-14, P-18), the #90 ranked Defenseman, skating in 80 games. He took 116 shots and was called for 18 penalty minutes. Marc is signed through the 2012-2013 season
Ben Eager ended the year ranked #386 on the points list (G-7, A-10, P-17), # 293 as a Forward, and as the #78 Left Wing. Ben played in 68 games, taking 84 shots on goal and being whistled for 120 penalty minutes. He scored 7 goals and had 10 assists. Ben is an Unrestricted Free Agent. I would keep Ben.
Torrey Mitchell ranked #320 on the points list (G-9, A-14, P-23), #93 on the Centers list, and #249 on the Forwards list. Torrey skated in 66 games, taking 46 penalty minutes and 116 shots on goal. Torrey is on a contract through the 2012-2013 season.
Jamal Mayers A Right Wing, Jamal was #449 on the points list (G-3, A-11, P-14), #325 as a Forward, #91 as a Right Wing, and he made his presence known by protecting defensive zone. In 78 games Jamal had 124 penalty minutes. He has 11 assists and 3 goals. He also took 62 shots on goal. Jamal is an Unrestricted Free Agent. I would let Jamal go.
Douglas Murray Douglas, a defenseman, was #451 on the points list (G-1, A-13, P-14), #126 on the Defenseman list, played in 73 games, taking 102 shots and being called for 44 penalty minutes. Douglas is best known for his tremendous hits, using his weight to protect his teammates. Douglas is signed through the 2013-2014 season.
Kent Huskins Kent played defense, ranking # 513 on the points list (G-2, A-8, P-10)and #155 on the Defenseman list skating in 50 games. He made 38 shots and took 12 penalties. Kent scored 2 goals and had 8 assists. He is an Unrestricted Free Agent. I would let Kent go.
Scott Nichol Center position Scott played in 56 games over the season. He ranked #569 on the points list (G-4, A-3, P-7), #387 on the Forwards list, #116 on the Centers list, made 61 shots and spent 61 minutes in the sin bin. He scored 4 goals and had 3 assists. Scott is an Unrestricted Free Agent. I would release Scott to clear room.
Jamie McGinn Playing Left Wing was ranked at #103,(G-1, A-5, P-6) he was # 401 on the Forwards list. Jamie played 49 games for the Sharks. He had 33 penalty minutes and made 63 shots on net. Jamie scored 1 goal and 5 assists. Jamie is Restricted Free Agent. I would keep Jamie.
John McCarthy Left Wing John skated in 37 games, ranking #636 on the points list #419,(G-2, A-2, P-4) on the Forwards list, #84 on the rookies list, and #112 as a Left Wing. John was showed he could be active by getting 8 penalties and taking 41 shots. He had 2 goals and 2 assists. John is a Restricted Free Agent. I would send him back down as a reserve player to the minors.
Mike Moore Defenseman Mike played in 6 games. He was ranked #744 on the points list,(G-1, A-0, P-1) # 131 on the rookies list, and #244 on the Defenseman lists. MIke had 5 shots and 6 penalties. Mike is signed through the 20-12-2013 season.
Frazer McLaren Frazer played Left Wing for the Sharks in 9 games, ranking #197 on the rookie list,(G-0, A-0, P-0) #162 on the Left Wing, taking 22 penalties and making 1 shot. Frazer is a Restricted Free Agent. I would send him down to the minors as a reserve.
Tommy Wingels Center Tommy only had 5 games, but he took 5 shots (G-0, A-0, P-0) and was whistled for 17 penalty minutes. For his efforts, Tommy ranked #220 on the rookies list. Tommy is signed through the 2012-2013 season.
Brandon Mashinter Brandon played in 13 games, ranking # 195 on the rookie list, (G-0, A-0, P-0) #160 on the Left Wings, and #560 on the Forwards list. Brandon aimed the puck at the net 5 times and spent 17 minutes in the sin bin. Brandon is signed through the 2012-2013 season.
Antti Niemi was the workhorse for the Sharks, playing in 60 games (ranked #13 in league), for a total of 3524 minutes (#13). His goal against average for the season was 2.38 (#13), there were1741 shots against him (#14), his save percentage was 0.920 (#13), he had 35 wins (#9), he lost 18 games (#23), he has 6 OT losses (#20, and his goals against was 140 (#14). Niemi had one assist and 6 shut-outs (#8) with 2 penalty minutes (#39 –part of group with 2 by last name). Niemi is signed through the 2015-2016 season.
Antero Nittymaki acted as the backup, and may have played more if not for an injury. Antero played in 24 games (#48), for a total of 1414 minutes (#44). His goals against average was 2.72 (#39), there were 615 shots against him (#48), his save percentage was 0.896 (not ranked), he had 12 wins (#39), he lost 7 games (#49), had 3 OT losses (#46), and his goals against was 64 (#49). Nittymaki had 2 assists and no shut-outs, Nittynaky also had 2 penalty minutes, ranking #40 (by virtue of his last name in the ‘2’ group of 23 goalies). Antero is signed through the 2012-2013 season.
Alex Stalock played 30 minutes of one game, that one a win. I would send him back down as a reserve.
There you have it…my picks for who stays, who moves, and who leaves. I’m sticking my neck out with my choices. I’m basing my selections on the stats. Until the final roster is set on game day, the first week of October, only Doug and Todd will know the true team roster. The rest of us can sit back at our keyboards, phones, or anyplace hockey fans gather to debate or discuss our favorite sport.
Until the puck drops,