Corey Perry reportedly won't be a thorn in the Sharks' side for much longer.
The Anaheim Ducks are looking to trade -- or, if one doesn't materialize, buy out -- the 34-year-old winger, sources told The Athletic's Pierre LeBrun on Saturday.
"[The] reality is that Anaheim is going with a younger roster and the timing is right for this change," LeBrun wrote.
Perry was public enemy No. 1 in San Jose for much of his 14 seasons in Anaheim, thanks to his unique mix of pugnacity and prolificacy. Among active players, nobody has scored more goals against the Sharks (26) and nobody has more penalty minutes (94).
A four-time All-Star, Perry won the Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy as the NHL's leading goal-scorer in 2010-11, and the Hart Trophy as its MVP that same season. But after scoring at least 25 goals in every 82-game season from 2007 through 2016, Perry has failed to score more than 20 in each of the last three seasons. In 2018-19, Perry was limited to just 31 games and scored 10 points (six goals, four assists) as he recovered from right-knee surgery.
With a full no-movement clause and an $8.625 million salary-cap hit, Perry's contract seems difficult to move in a trade. The Ducks can retain up to half of that salary, but likely would have to include another asset or take on a contract another team is looking to move.
The Ducks finished 13 points out of the playoffs last season, so a Perry trade or buyout isn't going to remove a team that the Sharks would have to contend with for a postseason spot next year. Of course, the Sharks could also look remarkably different if one (or both) of Erik Karlsson and Joe Pavelski depart as unrestricted free agents, but Perry's pending departure simply signifies the end of an era in the Sharks-Ducks rivalry more than anything else.
But even if he wears a new uniform next season, the boos are likely to follow whenever he returns to SAP Center.