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Deep Blue Sea: Brenden Dillon returns to the Bay

Plus the Leafs signed a college goalie, figure skaters coaching in the NHL and more in today’s news and notes.

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Oct 16, 2021; San Jose, California, USA; Winnipeg Jets defenseman Brenden Dillon (5) passes the puck against San Jose Sharks center Logan Couture (39) at SAP Center at San Jose. Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports

I’m still reeling from the high of a season-opening win, so today is just a quick note.

Not to get lost in the shuffle of last night was defender Brenden Dillon’s return to the Bay Area.

The Sharks first acquired Dillon in 2014, sending fan-favorite Jason Demers to the Dallas Stars. Though it took time for fans to warm up to Dillon, his confidence in his game grew alongside their confidence in him and by the time the organization traded him to the Washington Capitals in February 2020, he’d become a fan favorite in his own right.

The COVID-19 restrictions since March 2020 have meant that the 30-year-old, who was traded to the Winnipeg Jets at the 2021 NHL Draft, had yet to return to San Jose since being traded.

Ahead of the season opener, Dillion visited the Hertls, and this photo of him with tiny baby Hertl is pure joy:

Of course, business is business. Shoutout to Sheng Peng for capturing the best moments of Dillon’s return:

Read more from Sheng about Dillon linked below.

News & Notes

  • Dillon on Favorite Memories, Lessons Learned with Sharks [SJ Hockey Now]
  • Erik Karlsson’s self-belief isn’t wavering: ‘I still think I’m one of the best in the world’ [The Mercury News]
  • Sharks rookies have major impact in season-opening win [NBC Sports California]
  • Five bold predictions for Sharks’ 2021-22 season [NBC Sports California]
  • Jasper Weatherby scores in NHL debut [Grand Forks Herald]
  • 17K SJ Sharks fans attend home opener as city hopes for much-needed economic boost [ABC 7 News]

Blood in the Water

  • 2021-22 Season Goals for Every NHL Team [Bleacher Report]
  • NHL Rumors: Sabres, Stars, Flames, Oilers, Blackhawks [The Hockey Writers]
  • Why did the Leafs sign a university goalie as a backup for Saturday night? [CBC]
  • NHL 2021-22 Stanley Cup playoff chances and projected standings [The Athletic]
  • Former figure skaters finding ‘surreal’ success as NHL skating coaches []
  • NHL started its $1 billion deal with ESPN and Turner Sports – here’s how many people watched the season openers [CNBC]

Scores & Recaps

Click on a team name to find a recap on their SB Nation site!

On the Schedule