Wednesday, July 6, 2011

NHL Rumors: Should the San Jose Sharks Continue Shopping?

It seems as though someone whispered into San Jose Sharks GM Doug Wilson's ear after last season and told him that back-to-back Western Conference Final losses are just not enough.

So Wilson re-tooled.

Making the biggest splash of the 2011 free agency period, Wilson and the Sharks sent young scorer Devin Setoguchi and talented sniper Dany Heatley to the Minnesota Wild for All-Star defenceman Brent Burns and All-Star winger Martin Havlat in two separate deals just 10 days apart.

It was an accord that payed off for both team, as the Wild got their go-to scorers and the Sharks got their premiere defenceman and discount winger.

Would you believe San Jose if they told you they were done dealing, though?

Not as long as Wilson is still the general manager.

Because of the Heatley for Havlat trade, the Sharks now take a $5 million cap hit instead of the $7.5 million cap hit they were set to encounter if they held on to Heatley.

So the Sharks let go of a failed dream in Heatley, but still manage to maintain a little dignity by acquiring the talented Havlat, as well as a lowered cap hit.

San Jose can use that decrease in cap hit in two ways. They can conserve and focus on re-signing the recently acquired Burns after next season, as he will be an unrestricted free agent, or they can keep shopping.

Here are a few rumors the San Jose Sharks have been linked to if they decide to keep shopping.

Alexander Semin

The San Jose Sharks were linked to the Washington Capitals' right winger Alexanders Semin earlier this week.

The Winnipeg Free Press is reporting that the Sharks are apart of a list of teams interested in trading for Semin.

The 27-year-old tallied 54 points in just 65 games last season, but many perspective teams wonder about his production without all-world talent Alex Ovechkin on his team.

I do not doubt the Sharks are interested in Semin, his talent and skill-set is coveted by several teams now that he is said to be available. However, with the Sharks making so many moves this offseason, who is not linked to San Jose these days?

Semin is great, but who would the Sharks give up for him?

Ryane Clowe or Joe Pavelski? Maybe some top prospects, as well?

I will back Wilson up on whatever move he makes, but on the surface, the Semin trade does not entice me one bit.

Chris Drury

Drury to the Sharks is not so much a rumor as a real possibility.

San Jose has not been linked to the 35-year-old center, who was just bought out by the New York Rangers before July 1, but he sure fits a need for the team.

The Sharks need a veteran forward to go with a young core of talented players.

Drury scored just five points in 24 games last season, but this could be more of a move centered in the locker room than anything else.

He could be the last piece to the puzzle for the Sharks this offseason.

J.P. Dumont

Dumont, like Drury, was bought out by his former team and has become an unrestricted free agent.

Another veteran forward, Dumont would give some presence in the locker room, as well as on the third or fourth line for the Sharks.

The 33-year-old did tally just 19 points in 70 games last season. However, in the two years previous to that, he put up 65 and 45 points for Nashville.

Maybe the Sharks could strike it rich in a veteran winger that another Western Conference team has given up on.

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