Wild West: Western Roster Changes – Part Three

Grant Campbell

2021-08-23

Restricted free-agent signings are still trickling in, but the summer has slowed hockey-related transactions down quite a bit. What better time to start preparing for next year?

Here is part three of our look at additions and subtractions for the remaining teams in the West (not including Seattle):

San Jose Sharks

Addition:

Nick Bonino – C – Bonino was signed as an unrestricted free agent for two years at $2.05 million AAV. He should provide relief for Logan Couture so that the top line can see better matchups and get more starts in the OZ. Over the past three seasons, Bonino has ranged between 0.43 and 0.52 pts/game so he should provide similar numbers in San Jose along with 13-18 goals. He is also good in the face-off circle and will kill penalties. He should be a good addition to this lineup.

Andrew Cogliano – F – He was signed as an unrestricted free agent for one year at $1 million. Over the past three seasons, his production has been between 0.2 and 0.22 pts/game and he has peaked with six goals, so expect similar numbers next year. At 34-years old he is still a very responsible player, who has very good possession numbers.

Adin Hill – G – Hill was traded with a 7th round pick in 2022 for Josef Korenar and a 2nd round pick in 2022. He was promptly signed to a two-year deal at $2.175 million AAV. Due to injuries to Darcy Kuemper and Antti Raanta in Arizona, Hill was able to dress for 45 NHL games over the past three seasons and steadily improve. He is 25-years old and it is a big step to go from 19 games last year to 1A position so we will probably see him split 50/50 with James Reimer until one of the two wins out.

James Reimer – G – Reimer was signed as an unrestricted free agent for two years at $2.25 million AAV. He has been a little hit and miss over the past two seasons with Carolina but one thing he has done well is win. In his 47 games there, he had 29 wins and 11 losses with a combined GSAA of 1.67. In 11 seasons in the NHL, Reimer has never played more than 44 games.

Nick Merkley – F – San Jose traded Christian Jaros for Merkley and signed him to a one-year $750k/$400k two-way contract. Depending on the status of Evander Kane, an opportunity could open up for Merkley with the Sharks. He played a career-high 27 games last year with 10 points. The 24-year-old former 1st round pick in 2015 has had a slow road to the NHL.

Jonathan Dahlen – F – Dahlen was a 2nd round pick in 2016 for Ottawa and came over as a 20-year-old in 2018-19 where he ended up playing a fairly unsuccessful year in the AHL where in 57 games he had 14 goals and 19 assists, split between Vancouver and San Jose's farm teams. After heading back to the Allsvenskan in Sweden for the past two years where he had 61 goals and 148 points in 96 games, he is back for another crack at the NHL at the age of 24. He should get a true opportunity this