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Sharks RFA Updates: News on Dahlen, Letunov & Wiederer

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Maxim Letunov, San Jose Barracuda
Credit: San Jose Barracuda

The playoffs are still going, but the San Jose Sharks are already locking up their restricted free agents.

Two weeks ago, they inked Joel Kellman to a two-year contract with a $750K cap hit.

Of course, that’s just the beginning: Jonathan Dahlen, Jayden Halbgewachs, Kevin Labanc, Maxim Letunov, Nicolas Meloche, Jake Middleton, Jeremy Roy, Andrew Shortridge, Tony Sund, Antti Suomela, and Manny Wiederer are all seeking new contracts.

I shook some trees today and got some updates about a few of these RFAs — including one RFA that you might be surprised to see back with San Jose Sharks organization next year.

Jonathan Dahlen

Of course, the Sharks have already made it clear that Dahlen is their future plans. A source tells me that Jonathan himself feels ready to challenge for a full-time NHL spot soon — which suggests to me that his training this past summer has gone well and he’s made a leap physically. We’ll see after Timra IK’s season ends, possibly around April.

Kevin Labanc

Of course, in terms of San Jose RFAs, all eyes are on Labanc, especially after last year’s below-market agreement. Labanc himself told San Jose Hockey Now two weeks ago that he’s excited to come back. There’s no question that Labanc is a quality talent, the question is, how much do the Sharks believe in him? Do they see him more as a core piece or someone who’s relatively fungible in the big picture?

Maxim Letunov

A source tells me that there hasn’t been contact yet between the San Jose Sharks and Letunov. It doesn’t mean, by any stretch, that Letunov is gone. We’re not even in the off-season yet. But it’ll be interesting to see how the Sharks treat this RFA: Is he a surefire NHL player or an NHL-AHL tweener?

Jeremy Roy/Andrew Shortridge/Antti Suomela

No new updates on this trio, but as I reported in July, all three RFAs were recently on the trade block:

I wouldn’t expect any of them back, perhaps Suomela as a shuttle guy. But I don’t think the organization as a whole regards Suomela as a full-time NHL player.

Tony Sund

I’m actually surprised that Sund hasn’t signed anywhere in Finland or abroad yet. So he’s still San Jose property at the moment. Regardless, based on what San Jose Sharks scout Tomi Kallio said about Sund in August, there’s no reason to expect him to return.

Manny Wiederer

A source tells me to expect Wiederer back with the Sharks organization. Coming off his entry-level contract, I’d guess Wiederer will sign a contract with the Barracuda. What might have been telling? Two months ago, when San Jose Hockey Now revealed the Barracuda’s Average Time on Ice (courtesy of InStat Hockey), a key observation was that Wiederer’s ice time jumped over two minutes between Roy Sommer’s tenure as head coach and Jimmy Bonneau/Michael Chiasson’s.

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Gary To

Letting Roy go is gonna be tough, had so much promise and regarded as a bit of a steal when we took him in second round that year. Knee injuries suck! Have you watched him play recently? Do you still see the skills there?

Timo Time

Would love your perspective on Roy here as well Sheng, thanks!

Dan Wallner

Is Dahlen in Sweden for the season or could he join the Sharks for camp to compete for a spot?

Kristian

He’s not joining the camp, staying in Sweden until the end of their season.

Ross Drummond

I learned a new word today thanks to you, Sheng- fungible! Thanks!

Skyler Greenberg

Given the large number of forwards the burrcuda have it makes sense that they need to make room. If guys aren’t gonna be NHL ready and are only gonna be AHL level guys you have to make room for the next set of prospects entering their age 20 21 seasons.

Erik Fowle

Very surprising to me. Already finished his fifth year after his first draft-eligible season and zero call ups. Adler Mannheim’s GM was quoted in February as being interested in him, too. https://www.eishockeynews.de/aktuell/artikel/2020/02/07/mannheims-manager-alavaara-rechnet-nicht-mit-rueckkehr-von-bergmann-und-michaelis/0aaa2ec4-ef54-4fb0-918c-68c4c890b36c.html

[…] The San Jose Sharks have a handful of important RFAs. Here’s the latest update (San Jose Hockey Now) […]

whiskerz

Definitely a weird off-season. I can see Sumo being back as next man up on barracuda roster, wasn’t too out of place on Sharks from what I remember of him

Alicia

Remember when we all had such high hopes for Roy? I think his injuries have just done him in. What a shame.

Also – I think we resign Labanc and give him another chance. No one played well last year.

Last edited 4 months ago by Alicia
andrew

Dahlen still hasnt signed his RFA tender?

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