Thursday, November 2, 2017

San Jose Sharks 10 Best/Worst Contracts of Salary Cap Era

What are the San Jose Sharks 10 best and 10 worst non-entry level contracts they have signed since the NHL had a salary cap? The worst contracts are simply ordered by the total amount of money, not the degree to which they are an over-payment. Every single one of these was signed by Doug Wilson. I've noticed that Doug does not give out many terrible contracts. His strike-outs tend to have a smaller price tag than many General Managers. That might have something to do with why he's kept that job so long.

BEST

1- Marc Vlasic, July 11 2012, 5 years $21.3M: He was never a big point scorer, but still produced a 39-point season in year three. He played some tough minutes for the Sharks and was +62 over this span. This is one of those guys who could play in the top 4 of any team in the league.

2- Logan Couture, Aug 30 2011, 2 years $5.8M: He scored 91 PTS in 113 GP. This price tag was very low considering he was coming off back to back 30 goal seasons on the end of his entry level deal.

3- Martin Jones, July 1 2015, 3 years $9M: They took a gamble on a guy who had mostly just been a really good back-up goalie and instead got a legit #1 who took them to a Stanley Cup final. Not bad.

4- Joe Pavelski, June 25 2008, 2 years $3.3M: He jumped up from 40 to 59 PTS in year one of this contract and finished with 110 PTS for $3.3M. That’s a win.

5- Christian Ehrhoff, July 9 2008, 3 years $9.3M: San Jose practically gave him to the Canucks in a trade I’ll never understand. That’s not a bad price for a 40-point defenseman. He reached 50 PTS in year three and played a big role in Vancouver’s run to the Stanley Cup final.

6- Joe Pavelski, June 24 2010, 4 years $16M: He scored 237 PTS in 286 GP, including a career high 79 PTS in year four (which for 2014 was the 2nd lowest non-entry level AAV of players with over 75 PTS).

7- Joe Thornton, July 1 2007, 3 years $21.6M: This contract isn’t going to make any “best bargain” lists, but they still got 245 PTS in 241 GP and one of the league’s most dominant centers. This would be the highest point per game contract he signed with the San Jose Sharks. The 3 best seasons of his career in San Jose were on a contract signed by the Boston Bruins.

8- Brent Burns, Aug 1 2011, 5 years $28.8M: In the first 2 seasons of this contract he had 68 PTS in 99 GP. By the last year he had 76 PTS in 82 GP and was in the conversation for league MVP. Also played a big role in their run to the Stanley Cup final.

9- Ryane Clowe, July 3, 2009, 4 years $14.5M: Over the first 2 seasons he scored 119 PTS as a power forward. His production started to dip in year three at age 28. His next contract can be found on the New Jersey Devils worst contracts list.

10- Patrick Marleau, Aug 15 2005, 3 years $12.5M: This AAV adjusts to $7.8M with cap inflation, but it’s still the best value the Sharks got out of Marleau in the salary cap era. He was squeezed into a team friendly contract coming out of the lost season when the cap was $39M.

WORST

1- Brenden Dillon, June 29 2015, 5 years $16.4M: Maybe it’s too soon to declare this a bad contract at 25 years old, but over the first two seasons he’s averaging 16 minutes of ice per game. He’s a bit pricey for the role he’s playing. Does not contribute much to the offense.

2- Mikkel Boedker, July 1 2016, 4 years $16M: His production dropped by half in year one of the contract and he was a healthy scratch in the playoffs. He’s young enough there’s still hope he can turn this around, but I’m not optimistic.

3- Jonathon Cheechoo, Feb 7 2006, 5 years $15M: When this contract was first signed, it looked like a tremendous bargain for a 56-goal scorer. But he got worse each season after it was signed, dropping all the way down to 5 goals, 14 PTS in 61 GP in year four. Then he was bought out.

4- Craig Rivet, Jun 22 2007, 4 years $14M: He was waived by the Sharks after 1 season, and went on to Buffalo where he got worse each year. By year four he fell down to 4 PTS in 37 GP at age 36 and never signed another NHL contract.

5- Brad Stuart, June 15 2012, 3 years $10.8M: He signed this 3-year contract at age 32 and saw an immediate decline in his PTS production, going from 21 PTS in 81 GP down to 6 PTS in 48 GP in year one. They were able to trade him after year two to Colorado for 2nd and 6th round draft picks. Not a bad haul for a 34-year-old declining defenseman.

6- Douglas Murray, Sep 24 2008, 4 years $10M: It was a 4-year contract for a 29-year-old player and his average ice time got smaller each season. The first 2 seasons were decent, but he dropped off on the back half.

7- Adam Burish, July 1 2012, 4 years $7.4M: He had a career year of 19 PTS the season before signing this contract at age 29. Over 3 seasons he scored 6 PTS in 81 GP for the Sharks before being bought out.

8- Mark Bell, July 25 2006, 3 years $6.5M: Bell was arrested during this contract, but hey, most folk heroes started out as criminals, right? He scored 48 PTS the season before signing this contract, then dropped to 21 PTS in year one, a trade to Toronto, 10 PTS in year two, AHL by year three.

9- Raffi Torres, Jun 20 2013, 3 years $6M: “He’s not playing, he’s suspended”, eventually San Jose dumped the rest of this contract on the Maple Leafs but he never played in Toronto.

10- Michal Handzus, July 1 2011, 2 years $5M: They gave him this contract at age 34. He scored 32 PTS in 106 GP, which is not worth $5M.

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