San Jose Sharks star center Tomas Hertl traded to the Vegas Golden Knights

Mar 30, 2023; San Jose, California, USA;  Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Laurent Brossoit (39)
Mar 30, 2023; San Jose, California, USA; Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Laurent Brossoit (39) / Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports

Rebuilds are painful. You grow connections to the players that are involved at the deadline, and that is painful enough, but now, we get to see one of the staples of the San Jose Sharks history. Tomas Hertl will move to a team that has history of disliking the team in teal. This is an extremely painful deal for Mike Grier to make, and it seems like it was two years too late for a deal, but he is now a Golden Knight.

The return is a large one though. It starts with David Edstrom, who was the first round pick of the Golden Knights in 2023. He's the big piece here as he is added to the prospect pool. He's not alone in this deal as the Sharks also pick up a 1st in 2025, a 3rd in 2025, and a 3rd in 2027 for their top scorer on the season. It's a lot, but there's still a lot needed to justify a return for Tomas Hertl, especially to a division rival.

On top of that, the Sharks are retaining 17% of the Hertl contract, knocking it down to $6.75 million against the cap for the next six years. That's a lot of retention for the Sharks, and it means that when the deadline comes around next year, they will not have any retention slots available as they are retaining on Brent Burns, Erik Karlsson and Hertl. It's a blockbuster, but for the wrong reasons I fear.

David Edstrom filtering into a prospect pool with Quentin Musty, Thomas Bordeleau, and Will Smith is a bright start to the future in the Bay Area, but it sucks losing Hertl. Whether or not Couture was looked at as a player that could have moved, we may not find out for a while. This is a painful deal for everyone involved, but we will have to learn to live with it.