What Mackenzie Blackwood's injury means for the San Jose Sharks deadline plans

Dec 7, 2023; Detroit, Michigan, USA; San Jose Sharks goalie Mackenzie Blackwood (29) congratulates
Dec 7, 2023; Detroit, Michigan, USA; San Jose Sharks goalie Mackenzie Blackwood (29) congratulates / Brian Bradshaw Sevald-USA TODAY Sports

In the game against the New Jersey Devils, Mackenzie Blackwood would leave the game with an injury and wouldn't return. It's a lower-body injury plaguing the former New Jersey Devils netminder. Blackwood will undergo further evaluation later today, with the Sharks not playing again until the Anaheim game on Thursday. Kaapo Kahkonen will play in that one anyway, but any long-term injury would cause problems for both parties, as Kahkonen's future is still uncertain.

Kahkonen has been linked with teams all over the league, from the Edmonton Oilers to the New Jersey Devils and almost anywhere between. San Jose is expected to move the pending unrestricted free agent before the deadline at noon Pacific on Friday, March 8th. Blackwood's injury could be a problem if the Sharks feel they need a competent goalie to fill in when Kahkonen moves on. Corona isn't NHL-ready; Makiniemi is injury-prone, so the organization needs Blackwood healthy.

Either that or the par of return may have to include a netminder. Kaapo Kahkonen will likely be moved on if the San Jose Sharks have a goaltender to fill in for the departing Finn. Whether that is a cap dump that comes back to accommodate the move or a third-stringer that is just a clear downgrade, a netminder must come back to make this work for the Sharks. It's not enough for just futures right now.

Potential suitors for the netminder have included the Philadelphia Flyers, Edmonton Oilers, New Jersey Devils, and Carolina Hurricanes, who have all been on the netminder market, each possessing bad contracts in goal. Moving Kahkonen would have been okay if Blackwood was healthy and able to play, but his absence will be felt and affect the team anyway. We'll see what happens between now and the conclusion of the season.