Ever since their collapse in the NHL Playoffs the San Jose Sharks as an organization have been reeling. None more than the front office, where GM Doug Wilson called the Sharks a “tomorrow team”. His moves have not really quite mirrored that so far, although we still have some time left to go in the offseason.
However, on Thursday he tried to clarify some things for fans by saying that he still expects the San Jose Sharks to make the playoffs.
In fact, it seems he is unsure about the direction he wants to take the club.
One of his most puzzling moves so far has been the addition of enforcer/goon John Scott, on the first day of free agency no less. What is the point of this move? Nobody knows for sure. Maybe to add some grit, but at the great expense of a more skilled forward, in a time where hockey enforcers are but an extinct breed, it is a hard move to understand.
In the case of Mike Brown’s new two-year deal, you could at least accept the fact that Brown skates hard on every shift, though whether he is efficiently effective at what he does is another story entirely.
There have been plenty of positives though, such James Sheppard’s one-year, $1.3 million deal as well as Tommy Wingels’ three-year, $7.4 million deal. Both played very well for the San Jose Sharks last season and were deserving of their contracts. Yes Sheppard struggled at times, but he definitely showed he has the potential to play well if put in the right spot.
Lastly, they’ve signed Scott Hannan to a one-year, $1 million deal which means it seems like they intend on using him as their seventh defenseman for depth and rotational purposes. You many not be a fan of his, but this a good deal for both sides.
Lastly, San Jose picked up left winger Tye McGinn –brother of former Shark Jamie McGinn — via trade from the Philadelphia Flyers for a 3rd rounder in next year’s draft.
This definitely seems like a trade that could turn out to be a good value for the Sharks considering 3rd round picks don’t normally make it to the NHL very often. In the last two seasons McGinn played 36 games with the Flyers and recorded 10 points (7 goals, 3 assists). Besides that he has been with the Adirondack Phantoms, Philly’s AHL affiliate, and in 163 games has totaled 79 points and 161 penalty minutes.
The problem with all these signings of course is that it leaves little room for San Jose’s younger core to try and come in and make a difference. Whether that be Mirco Mueller, who was great last season, or someone more akin to a Matt Nieto who came somewhat out of nowhere to have a huge impact on the team in 2013. While Doug Wilson is saying one thing he is in fact doing the opposite.
Personally if the San Jose Sharks are trying to rebuild, full on rebuild, I’d prefer them to go all in. Build the farm, sell off the assets, all of that. I’m not saying I want it because with the talent they possess they are clearly a team that can make the playoffs. But, if this is their plan, do it, and go all in. Don’t be all wishy-washy and flip-flop more than a politician at a debate.
So, are they rebuilding? Or are they re-tooling? Or none of the above? It’s hard to say, but if I had to guess it would be a mixture of all three. And if that is indeed the case, then the San Jose Sharks might not be in the greatest of situations at the moment.