The Sharks activated Dainius Zubrus from the Injured Reserve list (upper-body injury), giving us the corresponding move to Ben Smith's placement on waivers. Smith cleared waivers (somewhat surprisingly, IMO) and has been assigned to the Barracuda.
It seemed Zubrus was close to returning last night against the Coyotes, but may in fact make his return to the Sharks on Saturday...assuming he breaks into the lineup. Slotting Zubrus in on the fourth line and giving Mike Brown a night off seems like the go-to move, but given how well San Jose played last night it wouldn't surprise me to see head coach Pete DeBoer roll the same lines again.
Zubrus has been a solid possession driver, much like we thought he would be, in 17 games for the Sharks. He only has two points, but boasts a corsi-for percentage of 55.7. Some of that work has been done on the top line with Joe Thornton and Joe Pavelski, but for my money Zubrus is at his most useful when he's holding possession on the fourth line.
You can see the press release below.
SAN JOSE - San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks) General Manager Doug Wilson announced today that the club has reassigned forward Ben Smith (@BenASmith12) to the San Jose Barracuda (@sjbarracuda) of the American Hockey League.
Smith, 27, has appeared in six games with the Sharks this season recording five hits, one blocked shot and one shot on goal, and has missed 25 games due to injury. Last season, he recorded 14 points (seven goals, seven assists) in 80 games with Chicago and San Jose.
The five-foot-eleven, 200-pound native of Winston-Salem, NC, was acquired from Chicago via trade on March 2, 2015. He was originally selected by Chicago in the 2008 NHL Draft (6th round, 169th overall).
In a related move, forward Dainius Zubrus has been activated from injured reserve.