Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Kevin Kurz of CSNBayArea,
There’s a real possibility that there could be a blockbuster in the works involving one of the team’s core players.
Would aging veterans Joe Thornton and/or Patrick Marleau prefer to relocate to a team that has better prospects of winning in the immediate future? Was Brent Burns shifted back to defense last season in order to increase his trade value? Is Logan Couture still happy here, after he was critical of the team’s “not great” culture? Is Justin Braun expendable after he struggled in the first year after signing a big contract extension? These are all fair questions.
There’s also free agency. Wilson indicated that market is pretty thin but the Sharks have plenty of cap space to play with, sitting approximately $16 million under the limit.
Wilson has hinted for months that the Sharks could be in a position to take advantage of a club that is up against the cap. Perhaps they are readying an offer sheet or two for a top restricted free agent.
There should be plenty of options, and Wilson will weigh them all leading up to the draft and in the weeks that follow.
"We're putting this team in a position to bounce back and be very competitive come September,” Wilson said. “Will we explore everything? Yeah, we will.”
from Kevin Kurz of CSNBayArea,
Sharks owner Hasso Plattner was adamant that when he mentioned Penguins star Evgeni Malkin’s name during a recent press conference, he was only using the Russian forward as an example and wasn’t tampering.
“We cannot buy the Stanley Cup,” said the billionaire founder of SAP on May 8, before casually mentioning that Malkin wasn’t a player the Sharks could just go out and spend to acquire.
Still, some ears in San Jose may have perked up a bit late last week when Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet (Canada) mentioned that Malkin might not be happy in Pittsburgh. The Penguins were recently eliminated in the first round of the playoffs, and may be looking to shake things up this offseason now that it’s been six years since their last Stanley Cup and they fritter away the prime of Sidney Crosby’s career. Malkin is their highest paid player, carrying a $9.5 million salary cap hit through 2021-22.
Malkin’s agent predictably denied that his client was looking to be traded shortly after the report surfaced.
If both Malkin and the Penguins are ready for a change, though, there aren’t too many other teams that could take on Malkin’s salary.
from David Pollak of Working The Corners,
Q: Other than Brent Burns with Team Canada, and Patrick Marleau and Joe Thornton in an under-18 tournament two decades ago, is there anyone else on the Sharks you’ve coached before?
A: No, no. Everybody gets a fresh, clean slate and that’s the way it should be. When you go through a tough year like last year, I think that’s what the players want and I think the benefit of having a new coach is you can provide that.
Q: The Sharks missed the playoffs for first time under Wilson. What’s the primary thing that needs to change to make this team more successful?
A: I’m going to roll up my sleeves here this summer. I don’ t think there’s one thing. I think there’s a lot of things.
I want to talk to the players. I’ve had some good conversations with Doug. I want to watch some more game film. I’ve got some ideas in my head but I can’t box it up for you in one package here.
I can tell you I believe it’s fixable. The biggest thing that’s going to be fixed and the most comforting thing to me is the character of this group. You have a lot of proud people here that aren’t too happy about where they were sitting at the end of last season.
My history with that is if you’ve got character and you’ve been through that you’re ready to push back. I think we’re going to see that.
The San Jose Sharks are expected to name Peter DeBoer as their new head coach today.
The conference is scheduled to begin at 4:00pm ET and you can watch it below...
from Kevin Kurz of CSNBayArea,
DeBoer will likely have a heavier hand than his predecessor. One of the central reasons that the Sharks and McLellan parted ways on April 20 was that management wasn’t always happy with McLellan giving his veteran or established players extended ice time, despite prolonged slumps or perceived weak efforts. That should change under DeBoer, who has never been afraid to send messages through reduced ice time or the occasional healthy scratching.
According to a Sharks source, the club likes the fact that DeBoer will make “tough decisions, but he’s also creative and innovative.”
DeBoer is also known as a strong puck possession coach, as more and more teams gravitate toward those types of so-called advanced metrics. The Sharks have typically been strong in that area, although they finished just 13th in the league in possession (as measured by shot attempts) in 2014-15.
In his press conference on April 20, Wilson said: “We’re trying to acquire players that are puck possession players, because that’s the style of game we believe in. You can see where we’re going and where we think the game is going. … We want to play a possession game.”
DeBoer has shown he can do that.
via a San Jose Sharks press release...
San Jose Sharks press conference to introduce the team's new head coach.
THURS., MAY 28
1:00 p.m. (PDT)
* Doug Wilson, General Manager - San Jose Sharks
* Sharks new head coach
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
The San Jose Sharks are expected to announce Peter DeBoer as their next head coach before the end of the week, a source said.
Sharks general manager Doug Wilson, when reached by ESPN.com, declined to comment.
DeBoer, who coached the New Jersey Devils to a berth in the 2012 Stanley Cup finals, was fired by the Devils 36 games into this season, his fourth behind the Devils bench. He also coached the Florida Panthers from the 2008-09 season through 2010-11.
from Chris Nichol's of Today's Slapshot,
Elliotte Friedman was on Calgary’s Sportsnet 960 on Monday morning.
On what he expects with the San Jose Sharks in terms of their coaching situation, and how Dan Bylsma has been making the rounds:
“Honestly – that’s a great way to phrase the question – I honestly don’t know. I was told he was going to interview about 20 guys and I think he’s taking a good run at that.
“I believe he’s interviewed Bylsma. Somebody told me he hasn’t, but I believe he will or has. I know he’s interviewed Peter DeBoer. He’s interviewed Dave Lowry. I heard he did a phone interview with Rob Zettler, but he’s probably not the candidate. Another name I heard they’ve been talking to out there is Dave Quinn, who’s the coach of Boston University. Adam Oates was out there last week.
“I think it’s still possible that he may interview some guys who are still alive in the playoffs, like Trent Yawney in Anaheim. I also wonder about a couple of guys – Kevin Dineen in Chicago and Scott Arniel in New York. These are guys who are legit candidates and I wonder if anybody is going to wait to speak to them after their teams have been knocked out.
from Curtis Pashelka and David Pollak of the Mercury News,
Two hockey analysts with ties to the Sharks have very different ideas about what General Manager Doug Wilson should be seeking in his next coach.
"A coach is going to have to be able to come in there and be a fence-mender a little bit," said Drew Remenda, longtime Sharks broadcaster until this season and a onetime assistant coach for the team. "The coach coming in, he'll be solid in Xs and Os -- and everybody who gets a shot is -- but his communication skills are key."
NBC analyst and former Sharks forward Jeremy Roenick suggested Wilson should hire someone a bit rough around the edges to replace Todd McLellan, who left the team by mutual agreement last week.
"They need someone with a firm hand, someone who is not afraid to challenge the players verbally," Roenick said. "I thought Todd was a great player's coach. If there was one thing that I wish he did more was be a little bit more verbal and vocal on a fiercer side."
There are some players, he added, "that need to be motivated, that need to be kicked in the ass on more of a regular basis. When they disappear for four or five games, it's not acceptable."
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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