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Dubnyk & Donato “Excited” About Opportunity with Sharks



Welcome Devan Dubnyk and Ryan Donato to San Jose!

Here are some highlights from Dubnyk and Donato’s introductory press conference, along with comments from San Jose Sharks general manager Doug Wilson. In case you missed trade details:

Sharks Trade 3rd for Donato, Is Dubnyk Deal Next?

Sharks Acquire Dubnyk for 5th, Wild Retain 50% Cap Hit

Devan Dubnyk

Dubnyk, on why he was comfortable, professionally and personally, with move from Minnesota to San Jose:

It’s been a stressful week. Obviously, when you find you out [about possible trade].

But with the conversations that I’ve had with Doug and the staff — and also, just hearing from anybody who’s been involved with the Sharks — I’ve heard nothing but good things.

The more we spoke with Doug and other people, the more comfortable we were. We realized this was an extremely exciting opportunity with a great organization. The further this went down the road, the more excited we got about it.

On how his wife’s health issues affected his season:

Fortunately, everybody’s okay. We’ve had a chance to reset and get things back to normal.

It was nice to go back and do training camp, play half an exhibition game. Feel like I was back to myself and with a clear head. Allowing plays to come to me, seeing the puck, just relaxing and trusting myself.

I was battling questions all year about it, but I know for a fact that I certainly didn’t forget how to stop the puck. I’ve got a ton of confidence that I can get my game back, and even above where it was.

On his relationship with San Jose Sharks goaltending coach Evgeni Nabokov:

I’ve known him for a few years now. There’s a lot of familiarity there. Played a lot of games against the Sharks, he’s seen me play a lot. I’m excited to get a new set of hands on me to tweak some things.

On getting along with Martin Jones and both of them getting used to playing less:

I’ve always looked at it as being extremely important to have a close relationship with your goalie partner, regardless if you’re backing up or starting or splitting games.

The most important thing is to support one another. There’s only one other guy in the dressing room that understands what it’s like to be in the net. It’s important you’re positive with each other and supporting each other and trying to outdo each with each game but in a positive way.

I met him at the All-Star Game in LA [in 2017]. Seemed like a calm, really good guy. Looking forward to getting to know him more.

On why the San Jose Sharks were not on his 10-team No-Trade list (Dubnyk clarified that he handed in his No-Trade list before the 2019-20 season):

I certainly wasn’t thinking about being traded.

But as this has played out here and I realized that most likely there was going to be a change in scenery, it was a no-brainer. That’s why they weren’t on the [No-Trade] list to begin with: Who wouldn’t want to come play for a team that’s been as successful as they have been? So many great players and not a terrible place to live either.

On former Shark and current Wild back-up goaltender Alex Stalock:

Yes, Al loves it [in San Jose]. We loved to give Al a hard time every time we roll into San Jose, we joke with him that he still wishes he was part of the Sharks.

I haven’t spoken to one person that hasn’t had great things to say about the city and everybody in the organization.

Ryan Donato

Donato, on if he got frustrated with lack of playing time this year despite leading Wild with 14 5-on-5 goals:

It is frustrating. But I’m not the kind of guy to put the blame on anyone else but me. I know I created the amount of ice-time that I received.

I put everything on myself: I want to be a guy who can do it no matter the situation that I’m put in.

I did have a decent amount of goals for the ice-time that I had. But I could’ve had more.

On San Jose Sharks head coach Bob Boughner’s expectations of him (they spoke today):

I know he thinks of me as an offensive guy, a guy who will get offensive minutes. Hearing that gets me excited and boosts my confidence for sure.

For me, I want to be a guy who not only gets power play time and score goals, but also be a guy who kills penalties and play in those defensive situations. I have in the past [in college].

I want to be a guy who’s a 200-foot player. Not just a guy who creates offense. I want to be a guy who’s an offensive threat but is also just as good at defense as he is on offense.

On memories of Joe Thornton, that picture, and his dad Ted Donato’s excitement for him:

I do have some memories of Joe. That picture, from when I was a little kid, obviously that’s something I’ve held pretty close to me, being a big fan of Joe growing up, kind of idolizing him — obviously, my dad [Ted Donato] had such respect for him. I was always watching him whenever I got the chance, followed him pretty [closely] through his entire career.

My dad is excited. The league is all about opportunity.

I’m sure he’s excited that there are a couple really good golf courses in San Jose as well.

On Dubnyk:

Devan is a very competitive guy.

Some of the things that happened last season were unfortunate, but he was a great team player and dealt with it the right way.

Those [things] had more of an impact on him than a lot of people understand.

Doug Wilson

On why the San Jose Sharks chose Devan Dubnyk:

Adam Francilia, who also does a lot of work with goaltenders in the summer, has done a lot of work with Devan also. They were familiar with not only how he’s played — he’s a three-time All-Star, so he’s played at a high level — but I think they were very up to speed with the health issues that he had to deal with in his family last year.

There was a lot of empathy and understanding beyond just a hockey player, but the importance of health and family.

With Devan’s record, the last five or six years, if anything, he played too many games, just like Martin Jones. They’ve played a lot of hockey. He’s a big, strong guy. He’s healthy. He’s a three-time All-Star.

There’s a lot of times when guys get off track and have a year that’s a little low to their standards. Usually, it’s because of injuries. In this case, it was something that was out of his control. I admire the way that he and his wife Jennifer have handled it. Having talked to her the other day, I know they’re both really excited to come and join this organization.

On why the Dubnyk deal took so long to come together:

We didn’t want to use any picks from this year because we feel this is a very strong Draft. That part of reason why this deal probably took a little more time because we wanted to push the picks out.

On Martin Jones:

I’ve talked to Martin a lot this summer. He’s been working his butt off. He’s been training extremely hard.

You know you’re going to have two goalies. You know that there’s going to be a potentially compressed schedule. All he does, he takes care of his own business. The work that he and Nabby did in the last part of the year was a great example of his professionalism. Martin Jones has played some really good hockey for this franchise. He played too many games, you can’t really change that. But I know he and Nabby have an outstanding relationship. The relationship that Nabby has with Devan and Jonesy is going to be very important going forward.

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