Blame it on the Youth
Along with Timo Meier the San Jose Sharks have a lot of young talent on their roster who can help supplement the loss of their former captain. While Meier and Labanc will take on the heavier minutes and more defensive assignemnts other skaters within the organization will be called upon to help round out the bottom half of the forward group.
There are plenty of names to throw out there like California’s own Sasha Chmelevski, the leading scorer in the WHL last season Joachim Blichfeld, or even last years preseason star Ivan Chekhovich can make the leap onto the big club.
It also wouldn’t be a surprise if a player already playing at the pro level in AHL can make an impact in the NHL. Names like the Barracuda’s leading scorer Alexander True, Dylan Gambrell, and Antti Suomela all can slot in and play along the elite talent on the San Jose Sharks.
One important factor (even though he hasn’t officially signed a deal) is the fact that these skaters will most likely be playing with Joe Thornton. His presence on the team gives the Sharks coaching staff an anchor on the third line who will be able to help guide these young skaters through the ups and downs of a long NHL season.