In a move before the NHL trade freeze that took place at noon today, thetraded enforcer and fan favorite to the .
The Sharks receive a sixth round draft pick in return, the same price they paid to acquire Shelley from thein January of 2008. If New York re-signs him this offseason, San Jose would receive an upgrade to a fifth round selection in the 2011 draft.
"I am sad that he’s gone – great guy, great team player, and his blogs were hilarious and insightful," said Fear The Fin commenter mymclife of Fools and Sages. "He’ll get a warm welcome the next time he plays in San Jose, that’s for sure."
Notable off-ice accomplishments from Shelley include his blog on sjsharks.com, an interview with Drew Remenda about the role of an enforcer, a humorous commercial for SVSE, and a willingness to engage with fans at signings and after games.
We would also be remiss not to mention the work he did with the late Ryan Salmons, a Blue Jackets fan who succumbed to cancer on May 1st, 2009. Shelley was a professional athlete who committed his time to helping his community; in a day and age where the public is bombarded with stories of lavish lifestyles and immature behavior, it is refreshing to see a player who went the extra mile to acknowledge the common fan. He was, and still is, a class act.
Shelley also hosts the Jody Shelley Golf Fore Health in his hometown of Yarmouth every summer. The foundation raises money for medical equipment used in hospitals.
As for his on-ice contributions, Shelley served a role as an enforcer for a team that arguably did not require his services. The move adds to San Jose's draft coffers in the coming season, as well as opening a potential spot for one of the Worcester Sharks to make the jump up to the roster in preparation for the upcoming stretch run.
Whether that is Jamie McGinn, Frazer McLaren, or another forward remains to be seen.
I made the case last season that Shelley was an unnecessary addition to the on-ice performance for the San Jose Sharks, specifically in the playoffs where wasting a lineup spot for 3:30 of ice time doesn't make sense from an asset management standpoint. In addition, Frazer McLaren was seen as an upgrade compared to both Shelley and Staubitz, something that is now possible for San Jose management to pursue.
From an analytical standpoint, today was a success. The Sharks get a draft pick for a player they would likely not have re-signed, and the team is provided both a marginal amount of cap space as well as an opportunity for a player to make a greater impact during the playoffs. It is a good move.
Unfortunately, that comes with a price. The Sharks lose a class act within the organization, and a figure in the community that will be hard to replace.
Best of luck in New York, Mr. Shelley. Hopefully we'll see you again in early June.
The initial fanshot of the Shelley trade, with reader comments, can be found here.