Just over a year ago, the San Jose Sharks announced they were rebuilding.
“We’re a tomorrow team,” said general manager Doug Wilson to the Mercury News. "This is a phase that this organization has never gone into in the past, and maybe should have many years ago.”
And then … well, there wasn’t a purge. There wasn’t a reshuffling of the deck. Nothing really happened, partially because it couldn’t, thanks to the no-movement clauses for Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau.
So one year later … where are the Sharks. Rebuilding? Contending? Retending? Conbuilding?
Wilson appeared on Marek Vs. Wyshynski on Wednesday and offered some thoughts.
“We were crystal clear about what we were doing last summer. We used the exact same terminology that the Detroit Red Wings used. We expected to be able to rebuild and compete at the same time. We did the exact same thing after 2003,” Wilson said.
(So much for “a phase that this organization has never gone into in the past.”)
“Make no mistake about it: We expect to make the playoffs and compete every year,” he said. “Coming into this year, we had some cap space. We were looking at three important pieces for us. We wanted to secure a No. 1 goalie, who could fit for now and for the future, and that’s Martin Jones. He’s 25. We wanted to find a find a defenseman who could complement [the Sharks’ other D-men], and hopefully a left-shot guy who could play with Brent Burns. At the top of our list was Paul Martin. He played all those years with Kris Letang, played in a winning environment. Then were looking for a really quality, versatile veteran that hasn’t played a lot of games in this league. And that was Joel Ward.
“We wanted players that could help us now, but they can also enhance the growth of the younger players we have.”