The Associated PressSAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — General manager Doug Wilson began the offseason by making a run to add John Tavares to the San Jose Sharks. When that move failed and Tavares signed with Toronto, Wilson stood pat instead of rushing into a lesser move.
Patience paid off on the eve of the start of training camp.
The Sharks acquired two-time Norris Trophy-winning defenseman Erik Karlsson from the Ottawa Senators on Thursday for a package of young players and picks, adding a world-class player to a team now expected to contend in the ultra-tough Western Conference.
“We were looking for a difference-maker and there were really probably two main ones, both John and Erik over the last little while,” Wilson said. “We kind of kept our powder dry hoping this type of opportunity would come to fruition and it did. It doesn’t always happen. Sometimes you have to wait a little bit more time. The timeline Ottawa was operating on was prior to the season and it worked well for us.”
Karlsson joins a team with a top goaltender in Martin Jones; skilled forwards in Logan Couture, Evander Kane, Joe Thornton and Joe Pavelski; and one of the league’s top defensive units featuring 2017 Norris Trophy winner Brent Burns and shutdown defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic.
Karlsson had been rumored to be on the move since before last season’s trade deadline, with the Sharks closely monitoring the situation throughout. Karlsson said the deal still came as a shock but he is eager to begin work on a team that made the Stanley Cup Final in 2016 and lost to Vegas in the second round last year.
“I think it will be an extremely competitive team,” he said. “The culture they have there is a winning culture. They were recently in the Stanley Cup Final and they’ve been making the playoffs year after year. I know I’ll be walking into a group that will be extremely hungry to be successful every night and I’m looking forward to that.”
San Jose is sending the Senators a first-round pick in 2019 or 2020, a second-round pick in 2019, forwards Chris Tierney, Josh Norris and Rudolfs Balcers, defenseman Dylan DeMelo and two conditional draft picks. The Sharks also get forward Francis Perron.
Ottawa also gets a second-round pick in 2021 if Karlsson re-signs with the Sharks. That pick becomes a first if the Sharks make the Stanley Cup Final in 2019. The Senators also will receive a first-rounder in 2021 or 2022 if Karlsson is on an Eastern Conference roster this season.
Stars extend center Seguin
FRISCO, Texas (AP) — The Dallas Stars have avoided any lingering questions about the future of Tyler Seguin, signing the five-time All-Star center to a $78.8 million, eight-year contract extension that goes through the 2026-27 season.
General manager Jim Nill announced the deal Thursday before the Stars departed Texas to start training camp in Boise, Idaho. The team posted a Mario-inspired video on its Twitter account celebrating the news.
Without the extension, Seguin could have become an unrestricted free agent after this season, when he will make $6.5 million to wrap up his current $34.5 million, six-year contract.