The San Jose Sharks got closer to the ultimate prize this spring than they ever have, but ultimately fell short of the Stanley Cup – yet despite this, team veteran Patrick Marleau insists he isn’t going anywhere.
Mark Purdy of the Mercury News confirms that Marleau has listed a return to the Sharks for the 2016-17 season as his primary destination for the upcoming year, suggesting the 36-year-old will try to find a to play out the final year of his current deal before the new season begins. Rather than see a trade, he’d like to come back on board.
Drafted second overall in 1997, Marleau has been with the Sharks for his entire NHL career. The former Seattle Thunderbirds alumnus currently sits on 481 goals and 1,036 points over his 1,411 career NHL games, all played with the Pacific Division club.
It’s not altogether surprising that he’ll want to return next year, both given the success of the team during their 2015-16 campaign and given his individual performance during the year. Although his 13 points in 24 postseason games weren’t among the top on the team – Logan Couture led the team with 30 points through the playoffs – he was still a quality point producer for his club, contributing with an impressive 25 goals and 48 points during his regular season campaign.
The Sharks will need to determine how to approach their offseason before too long, but this announcement seems like something that won’t need much in the way of debate. If Marleau wants to return for the Sharks, there’s little reason to believe the team won’t be welcoming him back with open arms.