At the end of the Flyers’ season, Anthony and I discussed a rumor circulating around the Flyers organization that San Jose Sharks defenseman Erik Karlsson could be one of -if not the top- choice for the Flyers in free agency. Those hopes were dashed today first with a report by TSN’s Bob McKenzie:
All signs are pointing to Erik Karlsson returning to SJ and re-signing with the Sharks, which would take the most prominent name off the 2019 UFA board.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) June 17, 2019
We waited around for a few hours until a bombshell announcement from the team’s Twitter account, which included Karlsson thanking his teammates and expressing his excitement to re-up with San Jose for eight more seasons.
Video and analysis after the jump:
— San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks) June 17, 2019
Karlsson -who’s amassed 563 points in 680 career games- is one of the top defensemen in the NHL, but there are legitimate concerns regarding his injury history. Back in 2017, he played through two hairline fractures in his heel. After playing in all 82 games for three consecutive years in Ottawa, Karlsson’s games played dropped to 77 in 2016-17, 71 in 2017-18, and 53 in 2018-19. His 2018-19 season was greatly affected by a groin issue that caused him to miss the most games in his career, including the Sharks’ postseason game. Would he have looked great in the Orange and Black? Absolutely, but the likelihood of this deal looking back in Year 3 is pretty high. Unless he can stay healthy, Years 5-8 could very likely be a disaster and his reported annual salary -as high as $11.5m- could be a real albatross.
For more Flyers coverage, be sure to check out our Flyers podcast Snow the Goalie ([Apple Podcasts] [Spotify] [Google Play] [Stitcher] [RSS]), leave a 5 star review, and follow us on Twitter:@AntSanPhilly @JoyOnBroad