Sharks general manager Doug Wilson announced today that Freddie Hamilton, Daniil Tarasov and Matt Tennyson, all three of whom were thought to have a decent shot at cracking the Sharks' opening night lineup just a week ago, have been cut from the training camp roster and re-assigned to Worcester along with five other players. In addition to Hamilton and Tarasov, fellow forwards Travis Oleksuk and Melker Karlsson were also sent down while Tennyson will be joined in Worcester by defenseman Dylan DeMelo. Goaltenders Troy Grosenick and J.P. Anderson were also cut, leaving only Antti Niemi and Alex Stalock with the big club. Here's an updated position-by-position look at who remains in training camp:
Forwards: Mike Brown, Adam Burish, Logan Couture, Andrew Desjardins, Nikolay Goldobin, Barclay Goodrow, Eriah Hayes, Tomas Hertl, Tyler Kennedy, Patrick Marleau, Tye McGinn, Matt Nieto, Joe Pavelski, John Scott, James Sheppard*, Joe Thornton, Chris Tierney, Raffi Torres*, Tommy Wingels
Defensemen: Justin Braun, Brent Burns, Jason Demers, Taylor Doherty, Taylor Fedun, Scott Hannan, Matthew Irwin, Mirco Mueller, Marc-Edouard Vlasic
Goaltenders: Antti Niemi, Alex Stalock
Hamilton and Tennyson getting cut this early are probably the biggest surprises, considering those two and McGinn were the only players on two-way contracts (aside from Hertl and Nieto, whose spots are assured) with personalized nameplates at the team's practice facility. They were likely penciled into the opening night roster by management and the coaching staff prior to the start of camp but the likes of Tierney, Goldobin and Goodrow up front and Mueller and Fedun on defense have ultimately outplayed them.
All eight players cut today are waiver-exempt which might explain why someone like Doherty or Hayes (both of whom must be placed on waivers to be sent down to the AHL) is still with the club while Hamilton and Tennyson aren't. Granted, it's rare that unproven players are actually claimed on waivers at this time of the year but it's probably a consideration by management.
The headline here is probably that 18-year-old Goldobin is closer to making the opening night lineup than many expected prior to camp. The Sharks made a lot of noise about entering a youth movement this summer and, so far, they've kept their word as the prospects who have performed the best remain in camp regardless of their age or inexperience. The next step will be moving out a superfluous veteran like Burish up front or Hannan on defense in order to accommodate the likes of Tierney, Goodrow, Mueller and Fedun.