Listen, I knew the chances were minimal, but when I saw that Rudolfs Balcers hit the waiver wire on Friday, part of me hoped San Jose Sharks general manager Mike Grier would claim the 25-year-old, bringing him back to the club that drafted him for a third round. It wasn’t ever likely to happen, but wouldn’t it have been funny?
In July, Grier bought out the final year of the two-year, $1.55 million AAV contract extension Balcers signed with former Sharks GM Doug Wilson in July 2021. Originally drafted by San Jose in the fifth round (142 overall) of the 2015 NHL Draft, Balcers was part of the trade package used to acquire defender Erik Karlsson from the Ottawa Senators in Sept. 2018.
In 2021, Ottawa waived the winger and San Jose plucked him off the wire to bring Balcers back to the Bay. Though he had played one season with the San Jose Barracuda prior to the trade, he did not debut with the Sharks until 2021. He played 102 games with the Sharks over the next two seasons, scoring 19 goals and 21 assists.
After being bought out by Grier, Balcers signed a one-year, $750,000 contract with the Florida Panthers. At least he’ll have a relatively short move, as he was picked up by the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday.
Balcers scored 2 goals and 2 assists in 14 games with the Panthers.
News & Notes
- Jabber Jaws: Quinn, “We’re still fragile from the last 2 weeks.” [Fear The Fin]
- Did Sharks Rope-a-Dope Stars? [San Jose Hockey Now]
- Red Wings’ 2022-23 Trade Targets: San Jose Sharks [The Hockey Writers]
- Wild face Sharks looking to build on recent success [KRON4]
- Sharks’ Meier resumes goal-scoring ways, but is also excelling in another area [Mercury News]
- NHL Power Rankings: 1-32 poll, points pace vs. expectation [ESPN]
Blood in the Water
- Tampa Bay Lightning reportedly claim Rudolfs Balcers off of waivers from Florida Panthers [Raw Charge]
- Pacific Division Weekly: Darryl Sutter calls out Flames’ “bulls—t” [Fear The Fin]
- The Devils Are Getting Their Money’s Worth From Dougie Hamilton [All About The Jersey]
- An ‘awkward’ Claude Giroux puts together a strong performance in return to Philadelphia [Broad Street Hockey]
- Bryan Rust gets first fighting major penalty of professional hockey career [Pensburgh]
- The Problem With John Hynes’s Handling of Cody Glass [On The Forecheck]
- Maple Leafs honour Börje Salming [Pension Plan Puppets]
- NHL suspends Capitals’ Aube-Kubel 3 games for illegal check [Yahoo! Sports]
- Nova Scotia’s Shane Bowers makes bittersweet NHL debut with Colorado Avalanche [Saltwire]
- NHL early season overreactions: Johnny Gaudreau should’ve stayed in Calgary, Devils are playoff bound [CBS Sports]
Recaps & Scores
- Ottawa Senators 4, Philadelphia Flyers 1
- Edmonton Oilers 4, Florida Panthers 2
- Arizona Coyotes 2, New Jersey Devils 4
- Boston Bruins 3, Buffalo Sabres 1
- Pittsburgh Penguins 4, Montreal Canadiens 5 (OT)
- Vancouver Canucks 2, Toronto Maple Leafs 3
- Columbus Blue Jackets 3, New York Islanders 4 (OT)
- New York Rangers 1, Nashville Predators 2
- Carolina Hurricanes 1, Colorado Avalanche 4
- Chicago Blackhawks 3, Anaheim Ducks 2
- St. Louis Blues 3, Vegas Golden Knights 2
- Winnipeg Jets 2, Calgary Flames 3
- Detroit Red Wings 3, Los Angeles Kings 4
Click on a team name to find a recap on their SB Nation site!
On the Schedule
- Dallas Stars at Philadelphia Flyers, 10 a.m. PT/1 p.m. ET on NHLN, SN, NBCSP, BSSW
- San Jose Sharks at Minnesota Wild, 3 p.m. PT/6 p.m. ET on BSN, BSWI, NBCSCA, ESPN+
- Vancouver Canucks at Boston Bruins, 3 p.m. PT/6 p.m. ET on TVAS, SN, NESN, ESPN+
- Arizona Coyotes at New York Rangers, 4 p.m. PT/7 p.m. ET on MSG, BSAZ, ESPN+
- Washington Capitals at Tampa Bay Lightning, 4 p.m. PT/7 p.m. ET on ESPN
- Winnipeg Jets at Seattle Kraken, 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET on ROOT-NW, TSN3, ESPN+