Patrick Marleau officially was back on the ice with the Sharks on Wednesday in Chicago. San Jose signed the franchise legend to a one-year contract, hoping he can give the team a much-needed spark.
Wearing a Sharks logo across his chest once again brought the emotions out of the 40-year-old Marleau, who spent the first 19 years of his career in San Jose before signing with the Toronto Maple Leafs ahead of the 2017-18 season.
"Extremely emotional," Marleau said to reporters Wednesday when asked what it's been like re-joining his old team. "Just thinking about it brought up a lot of emotions. Very happy to be back. I can't wait to get out there and help this team win again."
Marleau on returning to the Sharks pic.twitter.com/M6R1XhNIjg— Curtis Pashelka (@CurtisPashelka) October 9, 2019
The Sharks have started the 2019-2020 season about as badly as possible. They're 0-4-0 and have been outscored 17-5. Coach Peter DeBoer certainly hopes the franchise's all-time goals and points leader can help.
Marleau will play Thursday against the Blackhawks and skated with the Sharks' first line Wednesday.
The three-time All-Star said he has been training after he was traded from Toronto to the Carolina Hurricanes this offseason, but was waived and hasn't played in a game yet this season. He also believes he will have another factor he can use to his advantage.
"I think I'm gonna have to use the adrenaline to my advantage, but to get this first skate today ... this was big for me, then and morning skate tomorrow," Marleau said.
Marleau can't be counted on to fix all of the Sharks' problems, though anything can help at this point. All in all, he's just excited to be back with the team that always has had his heart.
"I couldn't be more happy to be back here and be a Shark again," Marleau said. "The emotion I felt when that phone call came from Doug [Wilson] is overwhelming and I'm just very grateful to be back.
"I just want to help the team as much as I can."