Perhaps the Sharks’ best prospect in years can give the team an offensive jolt.
Timo Meier, the ninth overall pick in the 2015 draft, was recalled on Thursday and will join the team in Montreal. He’ll likely make his NHL debut on Friday night against the Canadiens at Bell Centre.
Meier leads the AHL Barracuda in goals with nine, and is third on the team with 15 points in 17 games. He’s plus-eight rating is tied for the team lead.
The Sharks are potentially down a couple more forwards after Wednesday’s 4-3 shootout win in Ottawa. Logan Couture was hit in the head by Ottawa’s Mike Hoffman on a dirty and dangerous cross-check in the third period, while Joonas Donskoi did not play despite taking warmups. It’s thought Donskoi is dealing with something minor, although he has struggled to produce this so far this season. Tomas Hertl (right knee sprain) remains out for at least next several weeks.
San Jose was likely going to recall Meier regardless of Couture’s injury, as Mirco Mueller was no longer needed as an eighth defenseman with David Schlemko and Marc-Edouard Vlasic both healthy enough to play against Ottawa on Wednesday. Meier would have been recalled earlier in the month, but came down with the flu.
The six-foot-three, 210-pound Meier is part of a deep 2015 draft class that has already made its mark on the NHL with names like Connor McDavid (Edmonton), Jack Eichel (Buffalo), Mitch Marner (Toronto) and Zach Werenski (Columbus). Meier is the only player among the top 11 picks overall that has yet to play a single NHL game.
The 20-year-old would have had a chance to make the Sharks’ opening night roster, but came down with mononucleosis in the first weekend of training camp, keeping him out of action for a month. He made his professional debut with the Barracuda on Oct. 28.
The Sharks will bring a three-game winning streak into Montreal on Friday, but still sit just 21st in the NHL with 2.43 goals-per game.