General manager Doug Wilson was busy Monday morning bringing in a pair of veterans.
The San Jose Sharks have been looking to add a veteran blue liner for quite some time and they did just that on Monday morning. San Jose acquired defenseman Roman Polak and forward Nick Spaling from the Toronto Maple Leafs for a pair of second-round picks and Raffi Torres.
The second-round picks will come in 2017 and 2018 as the Sharks don’t own their first-round pick this season due to the Martin Jones trade. Both players will be unrestricted free agents after the season.
It’s unclear at the moment whether Polak and Spaling will be in the lineup for San Jose when they take on the St. Louis Blues later today, but there’s a chance it could happen.
Polak is the centerpiece of this deal from a Sharks perspective as he fills a clear need for a San Jose defense that is short on depth. The 29-year-old Polak is having a nice bounce back season after being a minus-22 last year.
More from Blades of Teal
- San Jose Sharks fans need this Erik Karlsson shirt from BreakingT
- Norris Trophy odds show Erik Karlsson a step above the rest
- Are you the 2021 FanSided Sports Fan of the Year?
- Korenar deserves a chance at the NHL level
- Three prospects the Sharks should consider drafting
In 55 games, Polak has one goal, 12 assists with a plus-eight rating in almost 20 minutes of ice time per game. The key for San Jose is that Polak provides a physical presence that has been lacking from the Sharks blue line. He has amassed 220 hits and 56 penalty minutes this season and plays the style of hockey that is necessary come playoff time.
Spaling adds some depth to the forward ranks for the Sharks and will likely slot somewhere in the bottom-six. In 35 games this year, the 27-year-old Spaling has one goal and seven assists, and has the versatility to play center or on the wing.
Also, this trade likely signifies the end for Torres who has been hampered by knee injuries or suspension during his tenure with the Sharks. While many people in San Jose liked having Torres on board, he just couldn’t stay on the ice in a teal sweater.
This was an aggressive move from general manager Doug Wilson as he went out and addressed a major need for this team. While he paid a pretty high price, this Sharks team is right in the thick of the division race and could use a boost to try and track down the Kings and Ducks in the Pacific.
Stay tuned to Blades of Teal as we will have more analysis of this deal and coverage of tonight’s tilt against the Blues as the drive to postseason heats up.