In a largely forgotten quote from Wilson this summer, he said of Wellwood, “We haven’t had conversations with him for awhile. He has options and we can explore our options. Not saying that we won’t circle back. Every day we’re looking at ways to improve this team. We’re not finished in building this team.” (Working the Corners 7/01/2011) Interestingly, this was after the Burns acquisition but before the Havlat one on July 3rd. According to Andy Strickland, Wellwood has been told that he may have a shot at a tryout spot, but no contract. Despite this, he waits.
Where would Wellwood find himself if he landed a spot? Third or fourth line is most likely, as the first two lines are pretty well set at this point, and he really clicked with Mitchell last season. With several Wor-Sharks already contending for a spot on those lines, does it make sense to send one of them back to the AHL for a season in favor of Wellwood?
The fact that Wilson hasn't already resigned Wellwood probably means that he doesn't feel that there is room for him on the team anymore. The recent re-uppings of Couture and Burns, it's pretty clear that Wilson will resign folks as soon as he possible can, IF he wants them.
The Jets are more willing to offer him a contract and a solid chance at a home, but it's pretty clear that Wellwood not only feels he fits with the Sharks, he knows he has a decent shot at the Cup by staying with them. The Jets? Well, they could have an explosive first season back, but the odds of that are probably rather low.
Will Wellwood once again find a home with San Jose this season? Right now, it doesn't seem very likely, but Wilson has been known to surprise us before. If some of the Wor-Sharks don't pan out at camp, he could find himself back home in San Jose. I wouldn't hold my breath, though.