Latest on the Sharks and Islanders.

Are changes coming soon to the San Jose Sharks? Will the NY Islanders move Mark Streit or Lubomir Visnovsky?

Sharks GM Wilson claims he has no plans to shake up his struggling roster.

Sharks GM Wilson claims he has no plans to shake up his struggling roster.

SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS: Curtis Pashelka reports Sharks GM Doug Wilson said he’s always looking to improve his team, but believes the current roster is capable of overcoming its current slump, which saw them drop seven straight games after winning their first seven. Pashelka points out six Sharks, including their five highest-paid, carry no-trade clauses, meaning a shakeup involving those players (Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau, Martin Havlat, Dan Boyle and Brent Burns) seems unlikely. “The answer lies within that room,” Wilson said, pointing to the Sharks’ dressing room.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hat tip to GJ Berg. If the answer lies within the Sharks room, they’d better find it quickly. It’s one thing to go through a slump like this early in an 82-game schedule, quite another in a 48-game schedule, with a quarter of it already played. Wilson may have shopped around for help but either hasn’t found anything to his liking, or the asking prices  could be too high. If a trade isn’t likely in the coming weeks, don’t be surprised if speculation grows over how long head coach Todd McLellan keeps his job.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jonathan Willis believes NY Islanders defenseman Mark Streit is simply too valuable for the Isles to part with, but suggested Lubomir Visnovsky could be available if the Islanders are out of the playoff race by the trade deadline.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As I recently observed (and which Jonathan also noted), the Isles could retain Visnovsky if they’re in the playoff race by April 3rd. Of the two, Visnovsky would be the more likely to be dealt, but as with all things Islanders, that’s not a certainty. 


  1. The answer was within that room for the past 7 years, too, right?

    • Good call.

    • I was thinking the EXACT same thing. Every year it is the same story for the Sharks, the answer is in that room and every year they flounder and fail. Something eventually has to give, these guys need a true blockbuster to wake people up and bring in some fresh talent. Logan Courture is this teams future, this is going to be HIS team and I say now is the time to give him the team. Its time to go to big Joe ask him for a list of teams he would be willing to go to and pull the trigger.

      Joe Thorton will pull a massive return for the Sharks, he’ll bring in one or two roster players and easily add some picks or prospects in there as well. Thorton to get another scoring winger, some more elite defense, or re-stock the cupboards to save cap and have a quick turn around … whatever you have to do. The Sharks need a shake up and when you have a young gun like Couture salivating for his chance to become the face of the franchise … take it.


      I doubt that they are in the playoffs come trade deadline and they need to realize they are in real trouble. Visnovsky, Streit, Voukon could all leave this year. Thomas is doubtfully going to come play for them and DiPietro is a prime time buy out candidate. On defense this team has to hope that Reinhart & De Haan are ready for next year to play big minutes. The Islanders need to focus on resigning and resurging Brad Boyes and its probably time to give up on Josh Bailey.

      In the long run the reality of it is the Isles should be moving Streit, Visnovsky, Nabakov, & Bailey by the trade deadline this season and try and fill up the cupboards with some more assets, likely that they can flip into roster players in the off season. But a tank for Seth Jones is what New York needs and then to acquire a true #1 goalie. They have so much forward talent in Long Isle, they need to figure out how to get people to want to play there so they can surround Tavares with some talent, ensure that Matt Moulson wants to stay next year and get the club back into the playoffs.

      • While Jumbo Joe is a good player – there is just something about him where he just can’t get over that hump of being a “superstar” player. I don’t know whether it is leadership or what, but since his days in Boston I have always thought there was “something lacking”. On the other hand, I never felt Todd McLellan was the guy to get them to the cup and I thought he would be gone by this season. The Sharks are an aging team – and they need to move Murray, Clowe, Thornton, Havlat and Handzus while they can still get something for them. Maybe trade Joe for O’Reilly. As for the Islanders, I understand Wang is ready to sell them and once they get a new owner that is willing to invest in the team, instread of picking up a nonplayer to get to the salary cap floor – the Islanders will become a better team.

        • @Steve where did you hear Wang is ready to sell the team? I’ve heard nothing along those lines.

          • On MSNBC “Pro Hockey Talk”

            According to Josh Kosman of the New York Post, Islanders owner Charles Wang is trying to sell the team.

            The report says Wang is in preliminary talks with Manhattan investment bank, The Raine Group to sell the team to them. The price tag Wang is seeking out for his money-losing franchise is a sky-high $300 million. Considering the Islanders aren’t drawing well on Long Island (only the Coyotes draw worse at home) and are due to move to Brooklyn in 2015, he might be setting his target amount a wee bit too high.

            That said, the fact the team is moving to a better location closer to New York City does make them more attractive to potential buyers. Finding someone willing to come up with Wang’s insane asking price or something close to it might prove to be difficult.

            For what it’s worth, the Islanders have denied the report and said there’s no truth to it. There’s a grain of salt to be taken for this whole thing.

  2. If Thornton was ever to be shopped, the only team that could and would afford him, would be a team that knows that Thornton ain’t no 22-25 year old…and whom can be around for 10+ years for their team. So that team that can afford Thornton and have the talent to support him and be a good team beyond Thornton’s career…would be teams like: Edmonton, Washington and Philly. You might try to throw in a desperate team like Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal…but after giving up a few players (roster and prospects) and a couple of draft picks, their cupboards are getting bare. Well, the team of the ones last noted, Toronto might be the only one that could survive a hit at getting Thornton.

    To Edmonton: Thornton
    To San Jose: Hemsky + Paajarvi + Pitlick + 2013 1st Round Pick

    To Washington: Thornton
    To San Jose: Laich + Wolski + Orlov + 2013 1st Round Pick

    To Philly: Thornton
    To San Jose: Simmonds + Read + Rinaldo + 2013 1st Round Pick

    To Toronto: Thornton
    To San Jose: Bozak + Kulemin + Grabovski + 2013 1st Round Pick

    To Montreal: Thornton
    To San Jose: Bourque + Moen + Prust + 2013 1st Round Pick

    To Ottawa: Thornton
    To San Jose: Michalek + Condra + Bishop + 2013 1st Round Pick

    • You are giving up two 20+ goal scorers in your flyers deal when they can’t score. There is no way in hell they make that trade. It doesn’t make them a better team.

      • It makes them a better team, because Thornton makes players around him better!

    • While Thornton would bring something to each and every one of the teams mentioned above, I don’t think any of them are going to give up their future for an aging player who just can’t seem to win anything.
      San Jose wouldn’t consider Wolski and neither would any of the others as he hasn’t even proved he belongs in this league.
      Philadelphia may btu only because their GM can’t help himself when it comes to making big deals. Don’t know if Joe could handle not being the number one go to guy.
      Toronto, even though desperate for a number one centre would not give up three core guys and a first.
      He would definately add some size to smurfville, but giving them Moen and Prust would just send it the other way, and Joe is not a rough player.
      San Jose does not really need another goaltender, ignoring the last two weeks. They would however take a couple of top prospects but Ottawa will be patient and wait till next year when they will have Karlsson and Spezza back in the lineup.
      The only deal that might make sense is to Washington as proposed above but they would have to add somebody else other than Wolski.

  3. It’s time for Thornton and Marleau to go I mean come on.This soap opera would not have lasted this long in a real hockey market.One of them has got to go and yes with the amount of money they both make and those rediculous no movement clauses good luck.Sucks being a Sharks fan.Thornton would look good in Toronto and Marleau in Montreal I think.

  4. Re: San Jose

    I believe the coach will be turfed before anyone like Thornton is traded although I would love to see him with the Leafs, but I can never see that happening.

    Here’s an idea. Why not make Gomez a healthy scratch. While I stand to be corrrected, they have not won a game since he joined them.

    • I think they’re 3-4-3 with him, with only 1 of those wins being in regulation. Regardless, yikes – it’s been a freefall since he joined. I thought he might be a useful addition to the team, but…

  5. While the thought of Thornton being shopped seems absurd at this time, especially with his no trade clause, resigning him or moving him actually becomes a reality in the 2013/14 season as he is set to become a UFA when that season ends. Not only does Thornton become a UFA but so does Patrick Marleau, Joe Pavelski and their highest paid defenseman Dan Doyle.
    While at the end of this season Ryane Clowe and Michal Handzus are set to become UFA’s along with defenseman Douglas Murray. Of those three only Handzus has a no trade clause. I didn’t mention Scott Gomez, Tim Kennedy and backup net minder Thomas Greiss who become UFA’s after this season as well because they are easily resignable if the Sharks want to keep them and easily replaceable if they choose not to. But Clowe, Handzus and Murray need to be dealt with in the near future and a plan put in place as far as Thornton, Marleau, Pavelski and Boyle go.
    So while actually getting Thornton to waive his no trade might be difficult, putting together enough money (the four of them currently earn $24,566,667.) next season with the cap set to drop and keeping all their UFA’s might be just as difficult.
    San Jose needs to put together a game plan

  6. i would start a rebuild if i were san jose. rebuild around cutoure and be happy he is there. yes they can add some great peices by trading big joe and marleau, boyle and even clowe. here is what i would assume you could get fr them
    thorton: 1st, 2nd and a great prospect
    marleau: first and a prospect
    boyle: first and a prospect
    clowe: second and a prospect or maybe a first alone
    thn they turn around and draft fucale at some point in the first round

    • I think with Thornton you might get a “named” player maybe someone like Phil Kessel and Cody Fransen or Kessel and a high draft pick or myabe even swing a deal for Ryan O’Reilly.

      I don’t see them trading away Marleau, but than again Patty has been on Roenick’s list for the past few years as a nonperformer in the playoffs – so who knows whether Sharks management is paying attention to what he says. I think Patty is a pure scorer while Big Joe is a setup man. Boyle is up there is age and I think you might be able to squeeze something for Murray as I don’t see us getting much return for him in the future – he’s god awful slow and his skills have declined – versus Boyle who has the hockey instinct. On the other hand, I would have loved my main team Buffalo to trade for Clowe, but I’m glad we didn’t and I’m pleased with Ott. Clowe hasn’t done much this year and I’m just not sure what you could get for him, maybe someone like Sam Gagnier which would be an upgrade.

  7. The Sharks shouldn’t “blow up” their roster… but whatever their GM is doing isn’t being effective. The team needs way more intensity.

    • Agreed, totally. Just need to re-tool and find some more character guys, not blow up the whole thing.

  8. I would imagine Marleau to be traded before Thornton, and truly, I don’t see either guy being dealt this year.

    But while we’re dreaming, I was thinking on the Thornton stuff. The trade would almost certainly be to an Eastern conference team (SJS will likely get into the playoffs, and no chance they want to play him). So it has to be:

    1. an Eastern Conference team
    2. who needs a first-line centre to put them over the top
    3. who has a short window to win the Cup (due to the fact they’d give up prospects for an aging player)

    Looking up and down the teams, I don’t really know who that would be.

    I’d say none of the teams from Ottawa down in the current standings would give up much for Joe, as he won’t really help them before he becomes a UFA.

    NYR sometimes make this kind of splash, but they’ve got guys to re-sign this off-season, and I can’t see how they’d afford him.

    Leafs have some decent depth and he’d fit in great in Toronto, but I don’t think the Leafs have the current players on the roster to interest San Jose. (The Sharks will be re-tooling, not blowing the whole thing up, so they’d want a couple of roster guys now – and no, I don’t think Grabovski would be wanted.)

    Habs could offer up Desharnais, Subban + high pick for Thornton, but doubt they would. (Feel free to rip me if that deal is ridiculously unfair. I’m a Habs fan 😉 )

    Carolina & Pittsburgh are already deep at centre, and no chance he’s going back to Boston.

    By my count, that leaves NJD as the only team left. They might think “short window”, too, due to Brodeur’s age, not to mention Elias’.

    Henrique + Fayne + a pick?

    (As for Henrique, I know he’s a lot to give up, but SJS would want a quality player and more in a return, and Matteau and Josefson are two of the Devils better prospects, and both play centre, which makes Henrique somewhat expendable.)

    • I think Jumbo’s getting to much credit based on some of the trade scenarios.

      Henrique for Joe straight up would be a steal for San Jose. Joe;s got very little left in his tank, and is a better set-up man that goal scorer. Joe needs to go someplace with a lonely trigger man.

      If Philly would give up Simmonds-Read-Rinaldo and a 1st for him , I would encourage them to look over the Canucks roster and perhaps have a discussion.

    • Thornton to Jersey would never happen, nor would Henrique be part of the deal if it ever did. NJ adores Henrique and he’s bound to be their future captain. While I can never predict any of the moves the Devils will make, I can tell you the moves they won’t. Lou likes guys that play better in big games; he loves high intensity players. Cherry seems to think that Thornton is a high intensity player, and you see flashes of it, but with Zajac, there’d a) be no room for Thornton in the line-up, b) no real reason to deal for a guy like Thornton.

  9. Joe was a great player, he is still very good but hasn’t lead his team anywhere. He likes the west coast so I don’t see him leaving to go somewhere cold. ANA is going to have some big holes to fill soon. Its a conference rival but if the price is right.

  10. @JJB

    Welcome back Backckecking

    • I’ve been here just as long as ‘Bachchecking’ and arguing with him on most things actually. I do however use a similar post style so I can understand the confusion.