Sharks willing to listen on Karlsson amid resurgent season
The San Jose Sharks could be willing to move Erik Karlsson with the veteran defenceman amid a resurgent season.
TSN Hockey Insider Chris Johnston reported Tuesday on Insider Trading that the Sharks are open to listening to offers on Karlsson, who has 10 goals and 24 points in 18 games this season, though his cap hit and no-move clause may complicate a potential deal.
"Yeah, we should be firing up the Trade Bait board at this point, because Erik Karlsson's name would look pretty good at the top of that list," Johnston said. "And that's because his general manager, Mike Grier, came out of the general managers’ meeting today and just acknowledged, look, it doesn't sound as though anything's pressing here. But if a team were to approach him on Erik Karlsson, who is having such a wonderful season for the Sharks, he would at least be open to listen to that conversation.
"It should be noted [that] Karlsson has a no-movement clause in his contract; he has a hefty cap hit at $11.5 million. This would have to be a case where he wants to go and the team works with him. But the fact they're open to have that conversation is something to keep an eye on as the March 3 trade deadline gets closer."
The veteran blueliner, who is signed through the 2026-27 season at the NHL's fourth-highest cap hit this season, said in September he would not be requesting a trade out of San Jose.
"No, I committed here a long time ago. It didn’t work out the way we wanted it to early on. There’s a lot of things that probably played into that. I’m not going to get into details about that," Karlsson told The Athletic. "But I am excited for the future here now. I hope we can move in the direction to be successful again. Is that going to be this year? I mean, who knows? But I do think something good can come out of here."
Karlsson has already tied his goal total from last season, when he finished with a total of 35 points. The 32-year-old has failed to top 45 points in a season since joining the Sharks in a trade from the Ottawa Senators in 2018, but is currently carrying a 109-point pace.
While Karlsson has found individual success this season - sitting sixth in NHL in points - the Sharks are on pace to miss the playoffs for the fourth straight year with a 6-9-3 through 18 games.