One of the biggest draws of any sports video game is the ability to pick exactly who you want on your team. Who wouldn’t want a team with Gretzky, Richard and Howe on the top line? Because of functions like this, many people pay more attention to the Free Agency deadline on July 1st than to the Draft. Now that Sharks fans have really nothing better to do in the off-season than postulate over who management will wheel and deal, I asked our writers this:
Which of the upcoming Free Agents would you like to see in teal next season?
The guy you’d love to have here is obviously Zach Parise, I think he’s probably going to be one of the top 2-3 free agents in the market this offseason. Parise is a real heart and soul kind of player. Think Ryan Smith, but instead of today’s Ryan Smith more like when he was at the peak of his power and helped drive the Oilers to a Stanley Cup Finals appearance…also younger, faster and a better scorer. Parise had 94 points in 08-09 and another 82 in 09-10 before getting injured with a torn meniscus in early in the 10-11 season. How’d he do on the rebound from that injury? He only scored 31 goals and 69 points last season in 82 games, not bad; plus another 8 points in 13 games so far this year in the playoffs. Also he’s only 27, so just hitting his prime. He currently dons the C in New Jersey and would be great from a locker room standpoint. Here is a top 10 video for him that really showcases his talent. The guy scores with finesse, tenacity and insane hand eye coordination. The big drawback is that we’d have to generate cap space to sign him and fill the remaining roster spots, but that’s a post for another time.
There are a few players that I would love to see in Teal. Jiri Hudler being one of them. Hudler has a solid career in the NHL so far. He’s not a top line guy, but let’s be honest, we have too many of those anyways, and nothing to show for it. Hudler would make a solid second and third line addition to the team. He can score, play with grit, and, most importantly, is 28. This means he still has a good amount of years left in him. Our team needs to get younger and faster, and he is definitely one guy that can provide that. The next guy is Matt Carle, I would love to have him back. When he was with the Sharks, he just couldn’t develop as a player. But since joining the Flyers, he’s been able to develop more into a solid defenseman, with a style much like Vlasic’s. What are the chances that he’ll come back? Who knows, but he seems to like it with the Flyers. But if I could have him back, I’d pick him up in a heartbeat. And for my third choice, Ryan Suter. There is nothing better than a defenseman that knows how to play his position and has a high hockey IQ. We have enough offensive defensemen, I think it’s time to bring some in that knows how to play the position, and play it well. Suter is that guy. All three of these players are worth grabbing. They are all under 30, play a solid and consistent game, and has teams that might not be able to keep them. Let’s do work!
I can agree with Benny here that Suter would be a good choice for team teal and wouldn’t mind seeing him around. I’m going to take a different stance on who I think should come to this team. We have point scorers and some D-men who can carry this team if they can step up their game. I think I would like to see White, Vandermeer, and Moore gone. Then let’s shake things up and bring in some controversial players. I want the pot to get stirred up in San Jose in a major way. Let’s grab Trevor Gillies who played with the Sound Tigers all year and see if we can’t get a little work done by having a solid enforcer. I’d pay to see him throw down against Parros, don’t tell me you wouldn’t! Gillies is a much better tough guy than say someone like, McLaren…heck, we can afford his salary, why not take a risk? Not like anything else has worked so far. We could just bring in Parros as well…maybe just bring in a bunch of guys who can grow really sweet mustaches…no? Ok, seriously though, Jordin Tootoo, Olli Jokinen, aaaaaaaaand Pavel Kubina if you guys aren’t sold on my stacking tough guy mustache growing men idea.
As far as unrestricted free agents (UFA’s) go, this is my philosophy for this year with the Sharks just coming off a failed campaign in the post season…
1) All UFA’s the Sharks have, let them walk…All of them…The Sharks can’t win without them? They didn’t exactly win with them either…
2) The Sharks need better defense and penalty killing…If Ryan Suter is available, sign him. If Shea Webber is avabilable, sign him. Or sign Joe Corvo, who is a battle tested veteran who’s won a Stanley Cup championship within the last two years. Jamie Langenbrunner is another UFA the Sharks need to look at. The Sharks can get more scoring depth too. Zach Parise would be nice to have on your side also…The question is can the Sharks ink any one of these UFA’s? Do the Sharks want any of these UFA’s? Do any of these UFA’s want to sign with the Sharks? DW needs to do his due dilligence as does the franchise…
Amy wanted to add this to Darryl’s response: I approve of Darryl’s selection of Jamie Langenbrunner. Hometown pride!
There are a few UFA’s I’d like to see the Sharks go after, however, it will likely require additional moves to get under the cap.
I’ll fully admit, I’m biased as this is my favorite player growing up, but, grabbing Ray Whitney at a good price might be what this team needs. Nothing overly priced, and this past season put up as many points as Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau.
I recall when the Sharks were on the road, Drew Remenda was interviewing Gary Suter and he was suggesting he’d like his nephew, Ryan Suter sign with Team Teal in the offseason. This might require a surprising shakeup with a well known player.
Zack Parise I would love to have come here but unless we’re partially blowing up the roster, I just can’t see it happening.
First off, a lot of the people I think we can do without happen to be ones that we picked up this year. White, Vandermeer, Galiardi, and Sheppard haven’t been all we’ve needed, and I think the money can be better spent.
The ones we need to hold on to are Stalock, Mitchell, Ferriero and Desjardin. Each of them have proven themselves (granted Stalock has only had one chance to do so), and can be extremely valuable if the hit to the salary cap isnt too high.
As for players that I would love to see in teal next year, I’ve gotta divide my list into dreams and possibilities. The dream players would be Teemu Selanne, Jarret Stoll, Ray Whitney, and Hal Gill. They wouldn’t be cheap, and most of them will likely stay where they are.
My realistic pick ups are P.K. Subban, Jamie Langenbrunner, George Parros, and Marco Sturm, all because they have the grit that this team needs. If the Sharks are going to do better next year they need to start pushing back and playing with an edge. I’m not saying they need to turn into the Flyers, but some of our guys (ie Couture) look like punching bags out there.
If you’d like to see your question answered, simply post it in the comments or on our Facebook, and we’ll work it into the rotation!
Blades of Teal ~ The Final Word On Sharks Hockey.Be sure to follow all of your BoT staff on twitter!!! @BladesofTeal @bladesofteal17 @Puckguy14 @KingShark49 @_StephLee_ @gordonronco