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s18 - Sharks Pipeline [WB3]

2021-05-03

The Sharks have spent the last 4-5 seasons in “rebuild” mode, and thus have found themselves with quite the stocked cupboard when it comes to prospects. They have them in all positions, from in net (Devan Dubnyk, SEATTLE), Defense (Alexei Emelin, SEATTLE), and forwards David Backes and Nathan Horton (San Jose). But what do they still have cooking down in the VJHL? Lets take a look:

Forwards:

James Neal (4.0 LW) – With one more season of Juniors eligibility, prolific scorer James Neal will look to make the jump into the VHL next season. Taken 4th ov in the S16 Entry Draft, Neal will be expected to chip in at a pretty solid pace on the top line, and will have quite the support to do that with the likes of Backes, Horton, etc. Already with an 80 SC rating, Neal will be a force to be reckoned with.

Jordan Staal (4.0 C)  - Jordan Staal is another key piece the Sharks are excited about in the VJHL, with 2 more seasons yet to go. Selected with the 6th OV pick in the s17 Entry Draft, Staal has a great mixture of physical, offensive, and defensive play to make him a quality top-6 player for many seasons to come.

Niclas Bergfors (3.0 RW) – Selected 30th OV in the S16 Entry Draft, Bergfors will be making the jump to the pro ranks next season, most likely beginning his career with the Seattle Kraken. Bergfors is a strong durable skater, however still needs a bit of time to round out the other aspects of his game. He projects to be a middle-6 type player for the Sharks.

Mario Kempe (2.0 C) – Selected towards the end of the S18 Entry Draft at 94th OV, Kempe still has 2 more seasons left in the VJHL to round out his skills. Another player who is a strong skater, he lacks the bit of physicality it takes to be a bottom 6 type player. The organization is hoping he can develop to fit this mold, or he may not find a home in San Jose in the big picture.

Defense:

Cody Franson (4.0 D) – Selected 34th OV in the S16 Entry Draft, Franson is in his final year of VJHL play, and could look to compete for a roster spot next season. A solid skater with even better defensive abilities, Franson also brings a bit of physicality to his game. He will be a solid piece of the Sharks defensive structure for years to come.

Karl Alzner (3.0 D) – Selected 29th OV in the S18 Entry Draft, Alzner has 2 more seasons in the VJHL. Very similar to Franson in being a solid skater, however he has a bit of work to do on the defensive side of the game. He does have some time to catch up, and could find himself as a #4/5/6 dman a few seasons out yet in San Jose.  

Kevin Shattenkirk (3.0 D) – Selected 16th OV in the S18 Entry Draft, Shattenkirk has 3 more seasons of VJHL playtime left. He projects to be a good 2nd pair dman, potentially first pair with the right development. Currently, he is a strong skater who still needs to work on the defensive side of the game. Shattenkirk was one of the strongest offensive Dmen left in the draft at this selection, and is something the Sharks were looking for as Zyuzin nears the end of his current contract in the next few seasons.

 

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