Sharks News & Rumors: Kane, Labanc, Kellman & More

In this edition of San Jose Sharks News & Rumors, there seems to be interest in forward Evander Kane as six NHL scouts attended one of his American Hockey League (AHL) games this past week. In other news, Kevin Labanc was injured during a game on Saturday night and is expected to miss significant time. Also, Joel Kellman was placed on unconditional waivers for the purpose of a contract termination on Tuesday. Meanwhile, Jayden Halbgewachs was recalled from the San Jose Barracuda on Monday.

Kane Receiving Interest

Since being sent down to the Barracuda in the AHL over two weeks ago, many have speculated about teams that may be interested in trading for Kane. While there is definitely some risk in acquiring him due to his off-ice behaviour, there is no denying how talented he is.

Evander Kane San Jose Sharks
Evander Kane, San Jose Sharks (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

This past Saturday, it was reported by Sheng Peng of San Jose Hockey Now that there were scouts for six NHL teams in the stands during one of Kane’s latest games with the Barracuda. Those teams were the Detroit Red Wings, Boston Bruins, Nashville Predators, Pittsburgh Penguins, Toronto Maple Leafs and the Dallas Stars. This comes just weeks after news broke that there was a team in the Eastern Conference who had serious interest in the 30-year-old. Despite his character issues, it seems likely he will get a chance to continue his NHL career with a different club at some point this season.

Labanc Suffers Injury

In a game against the Stars this past Saturday, Labanc was hammered into the boards and was very slow getting up. He missed the remainder of the game, and shortly after the team suggested he would be week-to-week. As we learned on Thursday, however, that is no longer the case, as the 26-year-old is being forced to undergo shoulder surgery to repair a dislocated shoulder.

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With that news, the timeline on Labanc has changed to roughly three months, which means we likely won’t see him again until after the Olympic break. It had been a rough season prior to this injury for him, as he has managed just six points in 21 games and was recently a healthy scratch due to his lack of offence.

Kellman Placed on Unconditional Waivers

On Tuesday, the Sharks announced that they placed Kellman on unconditional waivers in order to terminate his contract. The 27-year-old forward suited up for 10 games with the Barracuda this season, registering a goal and an assist.

Joel Kellman San Jose Sharks
Joel Kellman, San Jose Sharks (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Kellman has been a part of the Sharks organization for three seasons now, and though the majority of it was spent in the AHL, he was able to suit up for 38 games with the big club. In those 38 games, he managed four goals and nine points. He is expected to return home to Sweden and continue his playing career overseas.

Halbgewachs Recalled from Barracuda

As a result of the injury to Labanc, the Sharks recalled Halbgewachs from the Barracuda on Monday. This is the 24-year-olds first NHL call-up of his career and there is a chance he makes his debut on Thursday night against the Vancouver Canucks.

Prior to the callup, Halbgewachs had been playing very good hockey for the Barracuda, as he had registered seven goals and 16 points in 19 games. This is a huge opportunity for the undrafted Canadian forward to show that he has what it takes to carve out a career in the NHL.

Up Next for the Sharks

As mentioned, the Sharks will take on the Canucks Thursday night. From there, they will have a significant break as they aren’t set to play again until once again facing off against the Canucks on Tuesday, followed by the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday. These will be huge games for them, as they currently trail the Oilers by just one point for the final wild-card position in the Western Conference.

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