I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: not every deal is a good one. Sometimes you have to roll the hard sic and pass on the superstar to get a couple of third-liners. Now that the Sharks have seen over 20 years of Free Agency trading, there’s plenty of good and bad deals to look back on. This time I asked the staff to focus on the good:
Who would you consider the Sharks best Free Agency acquisition of all time?
One of the best (I’m not saying he is THE best) signings I think was the Manny Malhotra acquisition. The guy played with unrivaled grit, tenacity, and heart. The only other person that I liked more was Scott Nichol. Tough bugger for his size. Malhotra and Nichol was definitely an important piece to their success in 2009-10.
I’ll go with Jamie Baker. Some other good names, like former captain Rob Blake, Stephane Matteau, Kelly Kisio, and Tony Granato, but Bakes scored arguably the most famous goal in Sharks history during the 1994 playoffs.
1) Jamie Baker
2) Rob Blake
3) Manny Malhotra
4) Stephane Matteau
5) Kelly Kisio
I do like Jamie Baker, Tony Granato, Rob Blake and Manny Malhotra as the best free agent signings, however, these all had a special moment with the team, but San Jose has just never landed a major free agent in their prime with success. It’s sadly one of the flaws the organization has continuously let happen.
I’m torn between Baker, Malhotra and Blake. Whereas Blake didn’t have the physicality or grit that Malhotra did or Baker’s speed, I feel his calm and leadership helped give the team the cohesion it needed. Between Malhotra’s style and Blake’s leadership, I think those are things the team has been missing since their departures.