Tag: Brent Burns

The San Jose Sharks Should NOT Sign Erik Karlsson Long-Term

You have read the title correctly. The Sharks are in deed in no need of Erik Karlsson. And before you start dismantling this article and being a butt-hurt fan, or knee jerk reaction Sharks or Karlsson fan. Think about if for a second.

Are you ready for the article now?

Let’s get into this now. The Sharks traded for Karlsson this off-season as their big off-season acquisition and it was assumed that they were going to be Stanley Cup favorites and that Karlsson made them that MUCH better.

Which is completely understandable. Erik Karlsson is a Norris trophy winner and elite defenseman, pair him with Brent Burns, Marc-Edouard Vlasic, Brendan Dillon, Joakim Ryan and you have yourself a solid d-core. Just Burns and Karlsson alone would make for a solid 1-2 punch.

Right now the Sharks are sitting 2nd in the Pacific division with 94 points, five points behind the Flames. They are 2nd in the Western Conference and 4th in the NHL. They have had a successful season without a doubt.

BUT, the Sharks have allowed 230 goals for this season (still eight games left) the most (tied with Washington) among any playoff team. Along with 3.11 goals against per game. The Sharks have not been a great team defensively and that comes with having a defensive core that is heavily offensive minded in Brent Burns, Erik Karlsson, Tim Heed, Joakim Ryan. Which is not a bad thing but the point of this article is to dispute the fact the Sharks need Erik Karlsson long-term.

The Sharks do not need Erik Karlsson long-term by any measure. I myself as well as you should believe that Erik Karlsson does not makes this Sharks team that much better and a future Stanley Cup team.

The Sharks success this season has come off the back of their offense. They have five 25+ goal scorers, two 15+ goal scorers, seven 49+ point scorers and eleven players with 20+ assists on the year. Without this offense the Sharks are no where as good as they have been this year. Their defense has not been any, not one bit of a reason they are successful this season and a top-5 NHL team it has come off the backs of players like Brent Burns, Joe Pavelski, Tomas Hertl, Logan Couture, Evander Kane, Kevin Lebanc, Timo Meier, and Joonas Donskoi all having amazing offensive seasons. Players like Meier, Donskoi, Hertl and Lebanc well exceeding expectations this season, Pavelski scoring 30+ goals again and Burns being the lead man all year.

The Sharks sit third in goals for (263), 3rd in goals for per game (3.55), 6th in power play percentage (23.8), 4th in shots on goal per game (33.4)

Not once have I mentioned Erik Karlsson in that success because he has 42 assists and 45 points on the year, of those 45 points, 20 of them came on the power play leaving him with 25 five on five points. And I do understand that yes while it may come on the power play his majority of points. A lot of other defenseman for A LOT cheaper can get you 20 power play points a season. Is a 9.5 million dollar a year defenseman really worth just power play points? No. Matt Dumba gets 6 million a year and can do the same thing on the power play. Roman Josi gets paid 4 million a year and can do everything Karlsson does. Torey Krug gets 5.25 million a year and is a power play machine. My point is you do not need to pay someone that much money for power play purposes. Be realistic people…

Karlsson has played in only 42 games and it is apparent to anyone with half a brain that Karlsson’s injury that he induced during the Stanley Cup run in 2016-17 is clearly still affecting him and his health is a major question.

Therefore with the success the Sharks have had without Karlsson, seeing Meier, Lebanc, Donskoi and Hertl have great seasons along with the potential of Marcus Sorensen is it smart for the Sharks to invest around 57-70 million dollars in Erik Karlsson? Probably not.

Joe Pavelski contract needs to be renewed, Joe Thornton if he continues needs a contract, Joonas Donskoi, Timo Meier need contracts, Tim Heed and Joakim Ryan need contracts. Justin Braun, Brenden Dillon need contracts at the end of the 2019-2020 season. Are the Sharks really going to risk the long-term success of their franchise for one player who played 42 regular season games, did not bring much or anything at all to the table and realistically does not guarantee this team a cup now or in the coming years.

I’d hope Sharks management can see the big picture here and look at this realistically. Especially with the play of Brent Burns being as good as it has been and also only being paid 8 million a year to be the top-scoring defenseman in the league for the last three or so years…

The Sharks have a number one and two defenseman in Brent Burns. And it clearly shows that you can stack your blue line all you want but without solid goal tending and consistent offense you are not going to win a championship(Nashville). Look at the Penguins d-core in their cup runs, Washington’s last season?

It is evident to me that the Sharks do not need Erik Karlsson. Burns does a fine job sailing the ship. Plus investing a lot of money into Karlsson with his injury concerns and cap-room issues it would cause the Sharks. The Sharks would be better off letting him walk and adding more scoring and better plug-in players on their back end.

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Mark Giordano Should 100 Percent Win The Norris Trophy This Season

I know your thoughts after reading this title are probably either, (1) I am a moron or (2) you think I am going some where with this. Hear me out, I am not saying he is going to win the Norris trophy as in he is a shoe-in and no one else compares but, what I am saying is that he should win it.

Taking a look at the other candidates and top defenseman in the NHL at the moment they are all in their mid-late twenties or early thirties and then there is Mark Giordano who is 35-years-old, a 14-year veteran and still producing at same rate as a mid-twenty year old.

Giordano is having one of the best seasons of his career, he is on pace to well exceed his 2015-16 when he had 21 goals and 56 points in 82 games. Giordano has 52 points in 49 games (1.06 points per game), leads all defenseman in plus/minus (+29), second in assists (41) among all defenseman, tied third among all defenseman in goals (11), second in points (52), tied sixth in power play points (18), and 13th in time on ice among defenseman with 24:45.

Aside from all the “important” statistics that essentially decides the Norris trophy winner, what Giordano brings to the Flames in terms of leadership and experience has made them the team they are and a reason the Flames are currently 1st in their division and one of the best NHL teams right now.

Intangibly speaking Giordano has it all, a great leader, a great role model on and off the ice, plays the game well, never gets in trouble, leads the Flames back end year after year as well as the whole Flames team in general. Giordano has the full package and not to say the other defenseman like Brent Burns, John Carlson and Kris Letang don’t but Giordano is a 35-year-old defenseman playing like he is twenty years old still. With how quickly this game is changing in terms of speed and style of play, the fact Giordano can still dominate the blue line and be a top three defenseman in the NHL towards the end of his career and closer to 40-years-old then 30, is remarkable.

Get this one right NHL, if Giordano continues this pace and is a top-three defenseman at the end of the season. Do the right thing, make the right choice and pick your 2018-19 Norris Trophy winner to be Mark Giordano.

 

What’s wrong with the San Jose Sharks?

If you would have said the Sharks would be tied fifth for most goals against in the NHL, ranked 16th among all teams, two games above .500 and tied for third place (by a hair) in the Pacific. I would have questioned your ability to speak hockey. 

Who would have thought the San Jose Sharks a team with a blue line consisting of Erik Karlsson, Brent Burns, Marc-Eduard Vlasic, Brian Dillion and Jokiam Ryan to name a few with a goaltender of Martin Jones. Would be one of the worst teams defensively. The Sharks have allowed 88 goals in 27 games, allow 3.19 goals per game. Aside from that the Sharks rank middle of the pack in terms of goals for (82), goals for per game (3.04) and 11th in power play percentage at 22.7 percent. 

What could be the Sharks issue(s)?

For starters November was not their month, of their 14 games they managed to lose 8 of them. Loses coming to teams that should be wins, but dropping games to Edmonton, St. Louis two times have made it tough for the Sharks to gain much confidence. As well in the month of November the Shark were shutout three times (twice by St. Louis) and only scored three or more in nine of the 14 games, the NHL now a days you are going to need to score more than three goals on a lot of nights. 

The Sharks top scorers have not be living up to standards so far. Evander Kane, Tomas Hertl, Logan Couture, Joonas Donskoi all have eight goals or less on the year. On top of that Kane has just 16 points in 27 games, Donskoi has 12 in 27 games. They have a slew of forwards but it seems to be a consistency issue for the Sharks forwards. Aside from their top six having some issues finding the back of the net consistently. Erik Karlsson has not been what he was expected to be. The issue of Burns and Karlsson sharing time seems to be proving true at the moment. With Burns production, Karlsson’s has dipped a ton. On the year Karlsson has 15 points in 27 games with just two goals. 

No panic yet for San Jose 

It for sure was not a great month or start for San Jose per say but things will get better. In the month of December they have 7 home games of their 15 December games. They play a couple of mediocre teams like Arizona, Carolina, New Jersey, Chicago, Los Angeles, games that should be wins. Based off “strength of schedule” the Sharks do not have a tough December ahead and with a month and a half until the All-Star break this is a crucial month for San Jose. One that can make or break this team. 

Fantasy Hockey impact after Karlsson and Pacioretty trade: Does this downgrade Karlsson’s or Burns value?

As we all know there were two BIG trades the other day. One that involved Max Pacioretty and Erik Karlsson. But in that trade their were some other players that moving into their new role with their new team may also provide some fantasy impact.

But as you can tell by the title does this downgrade Erik Karlsson fantasy value? Well what do you think. I mean let’s be serious here. Karlsson thrived because he was the guy in Ottawa there was no one else to steal his fire power and he was able to play his game on his terms. Now obviously Karlsson will not be paired with Brent Burns still allowing him to play his game on either line one or two d-pairing but when it comes to power play time who is going to be the guy? Burns or Karlsson? What happens now? Karlsson usually logs around 20-30 power play points and Burns usually logs around the same. It will not be possible for Burns and Karlsson to have 25+ power play points each playing on the same power play. Which is why I ask, does this degrade Karlsson’s value? Or does it downgrade Burns value? This is obviously great for the Sharks but for us fantasy owners, what do you do?

Here is my take on this and predictions for Burns and Karlsson: 

Karlsson plays a full 82 game season, logging d-pair two minutes, playing power play one time I think he comes in at about 70 points, possibly more but not much. He’ll have to rely a lot on 5 on 5 points. Same for Burns, Burns usually has a lot of success on the power play therefore it can be wary for Burns owners this year. Either way Burns can come in hotter out the gate this year and perhaps slow down a little but I think Burns comes in at around 60-65 points, he’ll have a similar year like last year, nothing to crazy. He won’t be having a ton pleasure on the power play with Karlsson but still he will be a solid 60-65 point defenseman.

The value of Pacioretty now…

NHL Fantasy Hockey news
Max Pacioretty due for a 35+ goal season?

Max Pacioretty, well the guy has scored 30 goals four-times in his career and all with Montreal. His highest point total of 67 points coming in 2014-15. Pacioretty will be around that same mark, he will be with a veteran center in Paul Statsny an electric young forward in Alex Tuch. Playing around 17+ minutes a game as well on the first power play, probably being the “guy” offsetting William Karlsson. I have to say this will be a great year for Pacioretty and he will benefit greatly from this trade and at 29-years-old he is at the perfect age for a 38 goal, 23 assist year.

Tomas Tartar, Chris Tierney, Dylan DeMelo predictions

I think this is provides major upside for DeMelo and Tartar. For two reasons, one Tartar will be the guy on that second line in Montreal he has proven to be a 20+ goal scorer in the same scenario with Detroit and now he is going to Montreal with the same situation at hand. Not a lot of weapons around him but just him being the main scorer. Tartar could very well benefit from this, I think we can expect 27 goals, 17 assists from Tartar this year. Think about it, he thrived in Detroit when he was in this situation, coming out of Vegas where he did not fit well to be a veteran goal scorer on a young Montreal team it could be beneficial. He’ll play power play two(as of now) and be paired with Phillip Danault and Artturi Lehkonen on line two. A top six forward again, power play time and logging 20 minutes, Tartar may excel.

Dylan DeMelo
Dylan DeMelo potential in Ottawa upwards of 25 points?

For DeMelo this is provides major upside because now he will be logging major minutes in Ottawa on the second pair and possibly power play two. I don’t think we see major production from DeMelo but we can expect an uptick in numbers from him. If I had to say numbers wise form DeMelo he tallies 8 goals, 20 assists, not bad numbers but better than his last year.

For Tierney this may be good or bad. He showed some positive signs last year and seemed to be really enjoying his time in San Jose to be ripped out of that and thrown into a dumpster fire like Ottawa it may not be great for the up and coming young forward. Or it can play the other way where Tierney thrives off the move and enjoys his time in Ottawa, which I doubt. Either way I see Tierney producing around 15 goals, 18 assists. This is off the contingency now with Jean Gabriel Pageau out for the first 4-6 weeks, this gives Tierney the opportunity to play on the second line with Brady Tkachuk and Ryan Dzingel the only way Tierney is somewhat relevant next year is if he is in this top six, if not he’ll be a bottom six forward and producing at around 20 points next year.