Having come up short in the Western Conference Final for the second straight year, are big changes coming for the San Jose Sharks?
ESPN.COM: Pierre LeBrun reports the San Jose Sharks players, to a man, believe they’ll return to the Conference Final again next season. While LeBrun singles out Ryane Clowe, Logan Couture, Dan Boyle, Douglas Murray and team captain Joe Thornton for their strong performances in this year’s playoffs, he believes there were also too many passengers on the Sharks roster, singling out Dany Heatley, Joe Pavelski and Devin Setoguchi for their inconsistency. Heatley and Pavelski’s struggles are troubling for the Sharks, and LeBrun wondered if the Sharks will re-sign RFA Setoguchi, or explore his trade value this summer. LeBrun also believes GM Doug Wilson needs to add another top-four defenseman in the off-season.
TSN.CA: Bob McKenzie however doubts the Sharks need to “blow up” their roster this summer, pointing out this was an “injured, banged up, battered” team which did its best, though he does feel there could be some “recriminations”.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I agree with the assessment of adding another top-four blueliner. Heatley’s play has significantly faltered but with his large contract ($7.5 million per season, for three more years), he’s not going anywhere. I also doubt the Sharks will move Pavelski, but Setoguchi’s inconsistency and RFA status could make him a potential trade candidate. It remains to be seen what moves Wilson makes this summer, but don’t expect him to stand pat.