The San Jose Sharks didn’t make many major moves this offseason, though they did take some steps towards addressing the issues in their lineup. This article will rank each notable move the Sharks made this offseason.
NOTE: This does not include any restricted free agents who were signed to near league minimum deals or unrestricted free agents who aren’t projected to play in the NHL next season. It also doesn’t include any players drafted this year or the decision to make Bob Boughner the team’s full-time head coach.
6. KEVIN LABANC’S NEW CONTRACT
I don’t think Labanc’s contract is a bad one. I do think, however, it was at least somewhat of an overpayment. Despite his 56 points in the 2018-19 season, he was on pace for just 39 points this season and didn’t really solidify himself as a legitimate top-six forward. His $4.73 million AAV probably should have been around $4 million instead, however, he’ll be a key member of the forward group in the coming years and it’s far from a terrible deal.
5. RE-SIGNING STEFAN NOESEN
Noesen fit well in San Jose’s bottom-six upon being acquired last season. The Sharks got him at a cheap price on just a one-year deal and we know that he’ll be a solid depth forward for the team.
4. SIGNING MATT NIETO
I think bringing Nieto back to San Jose was an underrated move. The Sharks desperately need depth scoring and Nieto can help with that. At the league minimum, Nieto’s contract carries no risk but the forward has the potential to become a solid member of the bottom-six.
3. SIGNING PATRICK MARLEAU
Like the addition of Nieto, I was happy to see some depth scoring added with Marleau being re-signed. There’s a good chance we see him play on the third line and score between 25 and 30 points, if he remains with the team for a full season. He could also be a trade chip at the deadline once again and considering he signed for the league minimum, it was a win for the Sharks.
2. TRADING FOR DEVAN DUBNYK
Some people probably won’t love that Dubnyk was the addition in net but I don’t think you can knock the price they paid for him. He was a starting goalie with the Wild for several years and despite a down year, this addition at least gives the Sharks some options in net. Considering all it took was exchanging a fifth-round pick two years down the line for a seventh round-pick, along with the fact that the Wild retained half his salary, and the Sharks got him at a good price.
1. TRADING FOR RYAN DONATO
Of anyone acquired, Donato certainly has the potential to make the greatest impact. The Sharks managed to get him for just a third-round pick, which is a fairly good price, even for this market. He’s still young and has a high offensive upside, so with a potential role in the top-six, Donato could be a key addition for the Sharks.
***NOTE: We've launched a HockeyBuzz Sharks Twitter account! For anyone interested, you can follow @HB_Sharks for updates on articles, Sharks news, etc.***
Here’s today’s poll question (results and discussion will be posted in a future article):
Was trading for Ryan Donato San Jose's best move of the offseason?