Roenick: Sharks' Marleau not one of 'locker room favorites'


Roenick: Sharks' Marleau not one of 'locker room favorites'

Former Sharks forward and current NBC analyst Jeremy Roenick has never been shy about expressing his opinion, especially when it comes to Patrick Marleau.

Marleau, San Jose’s longest-tenured player and all-time leading scorer, has been involved in trade speculation since November, when it was reported on that he would be willing to waive his no-trade clause to go to either the Kings, Ducks or Rangers. Most recently, a report from ESPN said that Marleau’s agent “continues to quietly explore the market” with the permission of general manager Doug Wilson.

In an interview with local radio station KNBR, Roenick indicated that were the Sharks to move Marleau, it would be met with a sense of indifference in the dressing room.

“He’s still very, very good and very effective. But, I don’t see him being one of the locker room favorites. So, if they get rid of him, I don’t think it’s going to make a huge impact with the team,” Roenick said. “But, what they get back in return could be a huge impact. As good of a player as he is, Joe Thornton is the most popular player in the locker room, by far. I think Joe Pavelski and Logan Couture are right behind him. When you have a guy that’s been in that locker room his whole career and he is not thought of like that, that raises questions.”

It’s not the first time that Roenick, who was a teammate of Marleau’s for two seasons from 2007-09, suggested that the Sharks’ dressing room might be better off without the veteran center.

"He's an extremely talented player and you can get a lot on the market for a guy like him, and maybe change the chemistry on the team,” Roenick said on June 4, 2014.

In the 2011 Stanley Cup playoffs, Roenick referred to Marleau’s performance against the Red Wings in a second round series as “gutless.”

Roenick was also critical of the Sharks in regards to their home and road record. While the Sharks have been one of the NHL’s best teams away from home with a 16-6-2 record, they are just 9-12-1 at SAP Center (although they improved to 4-0-1 in the last five after beating Minnesota on Saturday afternoon).

Roenick said: “It’s definitely a sign when your team loses at home and wins on the road. It means it’s a team that’s not very mentally strong and has the ability to take their foot off the pedal. I love San Jose, it’s one of my favorite teams in the league, and it really frustrates me when they get in front of their own fans, they throw up goose eggs, they throw up dog games. They are struggling with attendance right now because they are losing at home. But when they leave, they come together and they become one and win hockey games.

“That tells me that there is good, quality guys in the locker room that love to come together and play for each other. But, they’re selfish and individualistic when it comes to being at home and being able to focus on the team, rather than themselves and their home life. They need to able to separate the two of them.”

Roenick also touched on the play of defenseman Brent Burns, “in the top three best defensemen in the league,” Martin Jones, who has been “good. He hasn’t been great,” and new head coach Pete DeBoer, who has “done a good job.” 

Sharks' Joe Thornton joined Hall-of-Fame company with 400 career goals


Sharks' Joe Thornton joined Hall-of-Fame company with 400 career goals

Programming note: Watch the re-air of Joe Thornton's 400th career NHL goal tonight at 8 p.m. PT on NBC Sports California.

Joe Thornton picked a great time to notch his 400th career goal.

Back on Nov. 13, 2018, the Sharks welcomed the Nashville Predators to SAP Center, who led the NHL with 27 points at the time. At first, San Jose appeared to be more than up to the task, opening up a 3-0 lead in the first period, which easily could have been larger.

Then, it all started going south.

The Sharks were held scoreless in the second period while the Predators climbed all the way back to tie the score. Less than three minutes into the third, Nashville took its first lead of the night.

For the next 10 minutes of game action, it sure seemed like San Jose would end up kicking itself for blowing a three-goal lead. But then Joe Pavelski tied the score at 4-4 with a goal with just under seven minutes remaining. 13 seconds later, it was Thornton's turn to play the hero.

Before the Predators had a chance to catch their breath, Justin Braun found Marcus Sorensen with a stretch pass from San Jose's own defensive zone. As Sorensen broke into Nashville territory, he made a Thornton-like cross-ice pass to the former Hart Trophy winner, who promptly fired the puck into the back of the net to retake the lead.

The Sharks would hold on the rest of the way to secure the thrilling 5-4 victory over a conference rival, and while the two points surely came in handy, Thornton's 63rd career game-winning goal stood out for another reason.

It was the 400th of his career.

[RELATED: Why Couture thinks Jumbo would be bad quarantine partner]

Don't remember? Don't worry. This memorable game will be re-aired Friday at 8 p.m. on NBC Sports California.

While there have now been 99 players throughout NHL history to accumulate at least 400 goals, there are only 13 who have totaled at least 1,000 assists. By scoring the game-winner that night, Thornton became the 11th player in NHL history to accomplish both feats.

Of the 11 players included on that list, only Thornton and Jaromir Jagr have not been inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. Jagr called it a career in 2017-18, so it's only a matter of time until he joins the group. Thornton says he feels like he has multiple seasons left in him, but the same goes for him.

Why Logan Couture believes Joe Thornton would make bad quarantine partner


Why Logan Couture believes Joe Thornton would make bad quarantine partner

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has restricted most of us to our homes, as the country and world attempt to mitigate the drastic effects through social distancing. Hopefully, you're surrounded by the people that make you feel better about the situation, and not ones that drive you up a wall. However, it's likely you didn't have much of a choice as to who you've been quarantining with. In times like these, safety takes priority over preference, and rightfully so.

Sharks captain Logan Couture has remained in the Bay Area ever since the NHL season was indefinitely paused on March 12. He is holed up with his girlfriend, who apparently makes for a much better quarantine partner than one of his longtime teammates.

As part of a video call with the NHL and a few Pacific Division rivals Friday morning, each of the participants was asked which of their respective teammates they would most and least want to be quarantined with, and why. Couture had no trouble coming up with his answer for the latter.

"The least one's easy," Couture said. "[Joe Thornton]. I don't know how he's surviving right now. The guy has ADD, for sure. If he can't go to the rink, he's lost."

Anaheim Ducks forward Ryan Getzlaf, who has played with Thornton on Team Canada, agreed with that assessment.

"That's 100 percent true," the longtime Sharks nemesis chimed in.

"I don't know what he's doing," Couture continued. "I've texted him a couple times throughout this just to check in on him, see how he's doing."

At last update, Thornton, 40, insisted he has multiple seasons left. As in, plural. Maybe he is going a little stir crazy.

[RELATED: Jumbo a Duck? Sharks' worst nightmare almost happened]

As for who Couture thinks would make for a great quarantine partner, he took a bit longer to arrive at an answer, but ultimately landed on someone who, technically, isn't his teammate.

"I'll say Barclay Goodrow, even though he was just traded," Couture responded. "I think him and I have the most in common, and I still count him as being a Shark. He's only been in Tampa for a little bit, so he'd be my guy."

It has been just over a month since Goodrow was traded to the Tampa Bay Lightning in exchange for a first-round draft pick, nearly half of which has occurred since the league halted play. He and Couture spent five-plus seasons as teammates in San Jose, so one would imagine they know what makes each other tick.

Best of luck to you and yours as we each do our part to help flatten the curve. If you're anything like Thornton, hopefully there's a socially-distant rink nearby.