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Sharks recall Kevin Labanc and Tim Heed at the expense of Ryan Carpenter and Joakim Ryan

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Only God knows what this means for the fourth line

Edmonton Oilers v San Jose Sharks Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Kevin Labanc’s brief reassignment to the San Jose Barracuda is over. The San Jose Sharks recalled Labanc and Tim Heed following a brutal loss to the Boston Bruins on Thursday night. Expect both to play this weekend as Ryan Carpenter and Joakim Ryan have been sent back to the Barracuda, at least on paper.

David Schlemko played only 12 minutes on Thursday, five fewer than Brenden Dillon, and will almost certainly sit in favor of Heed in at least one of San Jose’s two games this weekend. The Sharks play the Flyers at 10 a.m. PT on Saturday and then battle the Devils at 9:30 a.m. PT on Sunday.

Labanc’s demotion to the ‘Cuda was always temporary in nature so I’m not surprised to see him back with the Sharks. Heed joining him, on the other hand, is a bit of a surprise. I think it’s a surprise to the Sharks, too, who hoped they would be able to bring Ryan along for the ride without making any changes on defense this trip.

Instead, it seems Schlemko finds himself back in DeBoer’s dog house. He posted a -2 corsi differential at even strength last night, though frankly everyone was so poor against Boston that trying to suss something out by numbers is admittedly a big waste of time. It’s equally possible that Schlemko is banged up (and it’s possible that has been the case every time he’s been ‘healthy scratched’ this season). So I’ll give DeBoer the benefit of the doubt.

Sufficed to say, I expect both Labanc and Heed to play this weekend. The most disappointing piece of news to come here is that Ryan Carpenter is the other player sent to the Barracuda. Unless DeBoer plans on playing Chris Tierney as the fourth line center, it seems the Sharks insist on icing Micheal Haley in a role he can’t be expected to succeed in. Please don’t take that as a knock on Haley as he’s giving everything he can to the team — that’s a criticism of a coaching staff that continues to put a hard-working player in a position to fail.

Here’s to hoping DeBoer plans on icing a competent lineup against the Flyers on Saturday morning. This should be a very interesting weekend.