Could a Patrick Marleau-Sharks reunion actually be possible?
It has been reported that the Toronto Maple Leafs are looking to move the veteran forward, and Marleau would like to head back to San Jose.
While a potential reunion might not seem like a good fit for the Sharks, TSN's Pierre LeBrun reported Thursday that the team "may have interest" in Marleau, but that will have to wait until later.
It is beyond doubt that Patrick Marleau would covet a return to San Jose. And the Sharks may potentially have interest but they’ve got higher priority items to figure out now in trying to re-sign pending UFAs Pavelski, Thornton, plus RFA star Meier.... so on back burner for now— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) June 20, 2019
Marleau, who will turn 40 in September, is entering the final year of his three-year, $18.75 million contract. He is coming off a season in which he notched just 37 points, his lowest total since his rookie season.
With the NHL salary cap reportedly rising to only $82 million, the Sharks will have around $15,3 million in space after they made Erik Karlsson the NHL's highest-paid defenseman. San Jose also has a number of free-agent decisions still to make, with Joe Pavelski, Gustav Nyquist and Joonas Donskoi being unrestricted free agents, while Timo Meier and Kevin Labanc are restricted free agents.
Any potential Marleau-Sharks reunion likely would have to involve a third team trading for him and then buying him out, allowing the veteran forward to return to San Jose on a cheaper deal.
But, as LeBrun noted, that thought is not at the forefront of the Sharks' mind right now.