When the Sharks claimed Micheal Haley off waivers this past winter, everyone wondered when he would get into his first scrap.
He wasted no time, taking on Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby the very next day.
After leaving San Jose in 2017, there was no better way for Haley to announce his return.
Love him or hate him, Haley comes as advertised. He's a no-nonsense kind of player whose job is to keep opponents in check when they try knocking his teammates around. And when it comes to laying down the big hits, he does so without hesitation.
Now, the 33-year-old forward is set to become an unrestricted free agent. Here's a look at why he might stay in San Jose, and why he potentially already has played his last game in teal.
Why he could stay
Fans have strong opinions toward Haley, but teammates and coaches love having him in the mix. San Jose wouldn't have brought him back otherwise. Even though Haley wasn't an every-day player, coach Peter DeBoer liked having him in his arsenal.
While many aren't fond of Haley's physical style of play, there's no denying he brings a level of toughness that most of the Sharks' lineup doesn't have. For San Jose to keep up with some of the West's meaner teams, it helps to have a player who doesn't mind playing with some grit.
Why he could go
With the opening of free agency rapidly approaching, San Jose will be busy moving players around in an effort to create salary-cap space to lock down some of its main players. With space being created so the Sharks can sign those high-priority UFAs, it isn't likely Haley would receive a long-term deal as a utility player.
The Sharks also need more skilled players in their bottom six. While having a physical player like Haley benefited the Sharks during their hard-hitting playoff series against the Vegas Golden Knights, what they really need next season is depth scoring. Haley tallied just three points in 19 regular-season games with San Jose, which doesn't quite help.
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The Sharks might love having a player of Haley's caliber on their roster, but it seems more likely he'll play for a different team next season.
San Jose has a lot of work to do in order to sign some of its big-name players who are about to hit the market, so a bottom-six skater such as Haley won't take top priority. Additionally, the Sharks need more depth scoring after their bottom two lines had trouble producing deep into the playoffs.
So, with those two elements taking top priority, Haley's second tour in teal might be over.