The San Jose Sharks have had a flurry of activity in the past few weeks, especially for a team that’s getting ready for the golf course. San Jose signed four players (Nick Cicek, Max Veronneau, Thomas Bordeleau and Strauss Mann), adding to the team’s depth for the 2022-23 season.
Since the Sharks carefully protect the details of each signing, it takes some time for the rest of the world (including CapFriendly) to find out the business side of things.
Here’s what we know:
21-year-old Nick Cicek (pronounced CHEE-check) is a free agent defenseman that played for the San Jose Barracuda this past season. During his first professional season, Cicek has tallied 23 points (5 goals, 18 assists) in 50 games and tackled on 62 penalty minutes.
According to CapFriendly, Cicek’s contract is a two-year, two-way deal with an $835,000 average annual value (AAV).
Cicek will have to make strides in the off-season if he wants to make the Sharks roster out of training camp. Mario Ferraro has secured his spot as the team’s top left-shot defenseman. Unless Marc-Edouard Vlasic is traded, he’s likely to make the team, as well. Jaycob Megna has found a place in the line-up, but he’s a pending unrestricted free agent (UFA) and does not have a contract extension yet.
Whether Megna is re-signed or not, the Sharks still have Santeri Hatakka, Nikolai Knyzhov and Artemi Kniazev in the pipeline.
26-year-old Max Veronneau is hoping that this one-year deal with the Sharks will mark his return to the NHL.
The right-winger played in the Swedish Hockey League this past season, scoring 60 points (34 goals, 26 assists) in 51 games for Leksands IF. Prior to heading to Sweden, Veronneau played two seasons with the Ottawa Senators.
Veronneau’s contract has a $750,000 AAV.
April has been a busy month for 20-year-old Thomas Bordeleau. The young forward went from playing in the Frozen Four for the University of Michigan to signing an amateur tryout and playing two games with the Barracuda to join the Sharks.
Bordeleau’s entry-level contract is a three-year deal with a $925,000 AAV. The Sharks burned the first year of the contract when the team added him to the roster in Minnesota on April 17.
In two games with the Sharks, Bordeleau has registered two assists and made himself noticeable on both sides of the puck. Expect to see Bordeleau filling that third-line center role behind Logan Couture and Tomas Hertl next season.
Adding to the list of Shark signings is another University of Michigan product, goaltender Strauss Mann. The 23-year-old signed a one-year deal with the Sharks with a $925,000 AAV according to CapFriendly.
Mann was a relative unknown at the start of the 2021-22 season. He was never drafted into the NHL and chose to leave the University of Michigan to play professional hockey in the SHL this past season. In 22 games with the Skelleftea AIK, Mann posted a 2.19 goals-against average (GAA) and .914 save percentage (SV%).
The netminder gained recognition when the NHL dropped out of the 2022 Winter Olympics and Team USA named him to the team. Mann played two games with a 1-1-0 record. He made 69 saves and allowed 4 goals, leading to a 1.85 GAA and .945 SV%.
Odds are that Mann will start next season with the Barracuda. The Sharks have James Reimer and Adin Hill under contract for next season. Kaapo Kahkonen is a pending RFA, but it’s likely the Sharks will sign him in the off-season. There’s also Zach Sawchenko, Alex Stalock and Zacharie Emond waiting in the wings until Benjamin Gaudreau potentially takes the reins in the more distant future.