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Marleau won't return to Sharks this season, GM says: report

Former team 'at a different place'; unrestricted free agent forward will look elsewhere in NHL @NHLdotcom

Patrick Marleau won't be returning to the San Jose Sharks this season, general manager Doug Wilson told The Athletic on Wednesday.

"This takes nothing away from what Patrick accomplished here as a player and as a man," Wilson said regarding the unrestricted free agent forward, who turns 40 on Sept. 15. "He will always be a San Jose Shark, no matter where he goes.

"But the team is at a different place right now and is continuing to evolve. We owe it to the players who have put the time in preparing for their opportunity to show what they can do."

Video: Marleau not to return to San Jose

Marleau's agent, Pat Brisson, told Sportsnet on Wednesday that "the fit is not there at this time between Marleau and the Sharks," and that he will pursue opportunities elsewhere in the NHL. 

Tweet from @FriedgeHNIC: Checked in today with Pat Brisson, who represents Patrick Marleau. Brisson said the fit is not there at this time between Marleau and the Sharks. The winger very much wants to play, and will pursue other NHL opportunities.

Marleau skated at the Sharks practice facility Wednesday wearing a Toronto Maple Leafs sweater. He told The Athletic on June 28 that returning to San Jose would be a good fit for him and skated at the facility in mid-August.

Tweet from @KKurzNHL: Marleau continues to skate at Sharks ice in a Maple Leafs sweater. Everyone else today was in teal

Marleau played 19 seasons for the Sharks before signing with the Maple Leafs on July 2, 2017. He was traded to the Carolina Hurricanes on June 22 and became an unrestricted free agent five days later when Carolina bought out the final season of his three-year, $18.75 million contract.

The No. 2 pick in the 1997 NHL Draft, Marleau had 37 points (16 goals, 21 assists) for Toronto last season and two assists in seven Stanley Cup Playoff games. He has 1,166 points (551 goals, 615 assists) in 1,657 NHL games, including a current 776-game streak, and 127 points (72 goals, 55 assists) in 191 playoff games. He is the Sharks leader in games (1,493), goals (508) and points (1,082).

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