So much for the summer being quiet and slow, eh? There have been some interesting moves going on across the league, many the result of poor cap management in this new era of poor economic outlook. The biggest splash so far in Teal Town has been the Sharks signing Niklas Hjalmarsson to an offer sheet. This move is super ballsy by DW and I absolutely love it. 14 mil over 4 years is crazy money, but this guy is good and it's clear DW is willing to play hard ball to secure his services.
The downside of this is, if the Sharks do succeed in snagging Hjalmarsson, someone will have to go. Seto, having opted to not file for arbitration, has to be close in getting a deal done with SJ, so it's less likely that this deal will negatively affect him. Possible trade bate seems to be Murray (NO), Clowe (NO) and Huskins (I would be ok with this. Not a hater just, he's making more than I agree with). All conjecture at this point, but interesting nonetheless.
The other big Shark related summer story so far has been the signing of Nabokov to the KHL. This is not a move I saw coming if only because I was pretty damn sure SOMEONE in the NHL would be dying to get their hands on Nabby. I know, he's not the best goalie in the world, but he IS GOOD and he could really help out some teams that need a more solid presence in net. Not only that but he's a work horse and would easily give any team that signed him 60+ games.
At first I saw this move as a reflection of Nabby's lack of desire to win the Cup, but I have since revised my views. This is a guy who wants to play. It was clear come July 1st that while folks might have been interested, his price was likely a little too high. The KHL seized this opportunity to get a world class player to come play for them, and Nabby, wanting to play, took it. It's shocking to know that I watched his last few games in the NHL (not to say he won't come back but at his age it is less likely), and that he spent them all as a Shark. My personal hope is that, maybe, just maybe, really didn't want to play for anyone BUT the Sharks and opted for the KHL out of a fondness for his old organization. I'm trying to avoid falling into the "greedy jerk" trap with him. I don't know his motivations, but I have a lot of fondness for the guy who was the man in net for the Sharks for some many years so I'm inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt here. (even if Toskala was my first love in net)
On the upside, it means we don't have to deal with the ridiculously sticky and overhyped game where the Sharks face Nabby for the first time as a memeber of the opposition. I don't know about you, but I was NOT looking forward to having to play against him. That game pretty much just had "train wreck" written all over it.
What saddens me about this, I think more than anything, is knowing that Nabby has moved on to the KHL while Turco will likely be signed by someone out of quiet desperation this summer. Look, I love Marty as a person, he's absolutely hilarious, and he used to be very solid in net. But he's past his heyday now and I fell like dragging out the end of his career is cruel and unusual punishment for the man.
That and I REALLY don't want him on the Sharks.