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Sharks Preseason Notebook: 19 players cut from training camp

The Sharks have cut their training camp roster down to 46 — where does that leave the rest of the rookies?

The San Jose Sharks celebrate after defeating the Vegas Golden Knights at T-Mobile Arena on September 26, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Photo by Jeff Bottari/NHLI via Getty Images

The San Jose Sharks’ training camp began with a roster full of prospects who had impressed the team during development camp and showed promise during the Rookie Faceoff Tournament. Gannon Laroque and Benjamin Gaudreau had even made appearances in the split-squad preseason games against the Anaheim Ducks and Vegas Golden Knights.

Now that opening night is creeping closer, head coach Bob Boughner and his coaching staff have some tough decisions to make, and they started whittling down the training camp roster by re-assigning 19 players to their various AHL, NCAA and other club teams on Sept. 27. Most of the reassignments were expected, with the youngest players returning to the OHL or WHL. Others are bound for the San Jose Barracuda (AHL) training camp to remain in the system and play for a call-up and place on the Barracuda.

Players returning to their junior clubs:

Ethan Cardwell (Barrie Colts)
Brandon Coe (North Bay Battalion, OHL)
Benjamin Gaudreau (Sarnia Sting, OHL)
Liam Gilmartin (London Knights, OHL)
Daniil Gushchin (Niagara IceDogs, OHL)
Gannon Laroque (Victoria Royals, WHL)
Max McCue (London Knights, OHL)

Players assigned to the San Jose Barracuda training camp:

(All players are signed with the Barracuda for the 2021-22 season)

Nick Cicek
Zach Emond
Zach Gallant
Dillon Hamaliuk
Krystof Hrabik
Timur Ibragimov
Jacob McGrew
Cole Moberg
Kyle Topping
Evan Weinger

Players returning to other leagues/organizations:

Jeremie Biakabutuka (Rimouski Oceanic, QMJHL)
Macauley Carson (University of New Brunswick, USports)

Rookies who remain on the training camp roster:

Montana Onyebuchi (TO/21)
Ryan Merkley (ED/18)
Adam Raska (ED/20)
William Eklund (ED/21)
Scott Reedy (ED/17)
Jasper Weatherby (ED/18)
Ozzy Wiesblatt (ED/20)
Santeri Hatakka (ED/19)
Artemi Kniazev (ED/19)

For the nine rookies who played in the Rookie Faceoff Tournament and remain on the Sharks’ training camp roster, I asked head coach Bob Boughner what the next step to impressing the coaching staff was. His answer? They’re looking for consistency. These players showed talent in a short-term period, but can they keep it up over a sustained period of games? Can they generate offensive initiative, or maintain tight defensive coverage in more than one game and outside of practices? That will be the big question as the preseason dwindles and the opening night roster looms.

The next preseason game is tonight, Sept. 28 at SAP Center against the Los Angeles Kings at 7 p.m. PT/10 p.m. ET. An updated Sharks roster can be found here.