Patrick Marleau

Columnist: Sharks should trade Patrick Marleau


At this point, it’s become an annual spring tradition to dissect what went wrong with the San Jose Sharks. This is a franchise that has recently assembled several teams that, on paper, looked like Stanley Cup contenders, but never measured up.

The Sharks, to their credit, have constantly tried to reinvent themselves in an effort to win that elusive Stanley Cup. Since their failed 2008 run, they’ve parted ways with coach Ron Wilson, Evgeni Nabokov, Milan Michalek, Jonathan Cheechoo, Christian Ehrhoff, Brian Campbell, and Devin Setoguchi. Meanwhile they’ve added Dany Heatley (who they later traded), Stanley Cup winner Antti Niemi, Dan Boyle, and Brent Burns, to name a few.

They’ve managed to restructure without rebuilding, but it hasn’t worked. Does that mean that even more dramatic steps needed?

Mercury News writer Tim Kawakami said that, while he doesn’t blame Patrick Marleau, he thinks it’s time for him to be traded. Here’s an excerpt from his column:

The Sharks want peace and harmony, they promote the calmer nature and warmer spirit of hockey-dom in the Bay Area, and Thornton has turned into their leading ambassador for all that.

Marleau, though, has become emblematic of the flip side: If not much is always demanded, maybe, when the heat is turned up against tougher teams, not much is always produced.

In other words, the Sharks need a culture change and trading Marleau might be a step in that direction.

It’s worth noting that while Marleau was held pointless during the Sharks’ brief 2012 playoff run, he hass done significantly better in the postseason in the past.

Marleau comes with a $6.9 million cap hit and is inked through the 2013-14 campaign. He also has a no-movement clause. That’s not to say that the Sharks can’t trade him if they want to, but they shouldn’t expect equal value in return.

Kassian sent to hospital after being involved in car accident

Scott Darling, Zack Kassian

Montreal Canadiens winger Zack Kassian was involved in a car accident early Sunday morning.

According to the Montreal Gazette, Kassian was a passenger in the vehicle that crashed into a tree.

The SUV was being driven by a 20-year-old female at the time of the accident.

Montreal police confirmed that speed didn’t play a factor in the collision, but alcohol may have.

The Canadiens have since confirmed the incident took place and have also mentioned that Kassian was taken to hospital.

A club official described his injuries as being “minor”.

“(Kassian) was all bloodied up and stuff. He was in a daze,” said Steve Petrenko, a resident of the street on which the accident took place. “He had a hard time walking, and he almost took a fall.”

This story will be updated when more information is made available.

Habs and Fleischmann agree on one-year deal

Tomas Fleischmann,
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The Montreal Canadiens announced that they have signed Tomas Fleischmann to a one-year contract.

According to TVA Sports, the deal is worth $750,000.

The 31-year-old was invited to camp on a professional tryout, but his preseason performance showed that he could still contribute at the NHL level.

Fleischmann found instant chemistry with new linemates David Desharnais and Dale Weise, and it looks like the trio will open the regular season as Montreal’s third line.

The veteran winger started  last season with Florida, but was traded to Anaheim on Feb. 28. He had a hard time cracking the Duck’s lineup and was a healthy scratch in most of their playoff games last spring.

Fleischmann scored eight goals and 27 points in 66 games last season.