Once upon a time in the land of San Jose, was a sharks team that was a powerhouse in the Western Conference for over a decade. Franchise cornerstones in Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau, and Joe Pavelski have all passed on. The window of being cup contenders and a lock to make the playoffs is all but over.
Brent Burns has scored more OT goals than any other defensemen in NHL history. Let’s watch one of them now!
— San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks) March 28, 2020
However, A new day shines brightly for the franchise. David Quinn is the new head coach and Mike Grier is the new general manager of this team and marks his stamp on the club, not only on the ice but also up in the office. Mike Grier does indeed have a plan and the team undergoes a new direction.
Mike Grier’s Vision For The Sharks
Mike Grier has the San Jose Sharks going in a new direction. Upon taking over for Doug Wilson, he has marked his territory and put his stamp on the franchise. The former NHLer has made a slew of moves, but many wonder what direction is this team heading. Are the contenders? Is a rebuild on the horizon? What should the fans expect?
General Managers Moves
Mike Grier as the general manager wasted no time getting things going. Grier made a big splash trade with the Carolina Hurricanes, as he sent Brent Burns over and in came Steven Lorentz. Grier also went on to add Oskar Lindblom, Luke Kunin, Matt Benning, Nico Sturm, and Markus Nutivaara. While adding these players, he has also let go of players Jonathan Dahlen and Rudolfs Balcers. Both players are a bit older but haven’t shown much at the NHL level. Replacing them with already proven talent benefits the club right now.
Masisak goes on to state that at the opening press conference, he goes on to state that he wants to change the identity of this team. He has a vision for this team and the way he wants them to play and fit the needs to his style. With the core already in place, these are all complimentary pieces.
Are The Sharks Rebuilding?
Depending on how you define a rebuild, this roster has not changed enough to signal that. And based on what Grier has done, the shoe fits. The Sharks are not in the same boat as the Chicago Blackhawks who are selling off everyone, including Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. Even though Burns got sent packing, the remainder of the core is in place.
Despite losing some key pieces over the years, the core is still very much intact. The team boasts a core of Logan Couture, Timo Meier, Tomas Hertl, Erik Karlsson, and Marc-Edouard Vlasic. Unless part of the core is waiting in line to join Burns, a rebuild is not what this is. But depending on what the team looks like come, the trade deadline could signal what could be a rebuild.
Masisak states as well that Grier does not have a timeline. He is not throwing his chips in the basket going one direction or the other. He is not actively throwing away the future to contend with nor selling off everyone to rebuild for the future.
The San Jose Sharks enter a new era. One that will take patience and time, but in the end, it could all be worth it. It’s very hard to judge what could come next and what direction they are headed, but one thing is for sure is that the Sharks have a new identity and are forming a team to his vision and identity. A rebuild could be on the horizon, it all depends on how they start the season.