Thanks to two announcements on Wednesday, Sharks Executive Vice President and General Manager Doug Wilson has now re-signed five Sharks to new deals in the past three days. Center Wayne Primeau and defenseman Tom Preissing were the latest to agree to two-year deals.
Primeau had recently become an unrestricted free agent and was free to negotiate with any team, while Preissing was still restricted and could only talk with the Sharks.
"Wayne showed improvement with the new opportunity given him and, with his size and speed, he will have room to grow in the new NHL," said Wilson.
Primeau, a former first round pick (17th overall) by Buffalo in 1994, had a breakout season with San Jose in 2003-04, helping the club reach the Western Conference Finals. The fast skating, six-foot-four, 230-pounder showed his versatility throughout the season as he easily moved from center to wing for stretches and played anywhere from the first line to the fourth line during the year.
In 2003-04, Primeau, 29, posted career-highs in goals (9), assists (20) and points (29) in 72 games with the Sharks. In addition to his career-high offensive totals, Primeau also finished the season with 90 penalty minutes, ranking him second on the team.
Primeau enters the 2005-06 season one game shy of his 500th career NHL game. Through 499 NHL games with Buffalo, Tampa Bay, Pittsburgh and San Jose, Primeau has posted 128 points (42 goals, 86 assists) and 546 penalty minutes.
The Scarborough, Ontario native was acquired from Pittsburgh in exchange for Matt Bradley on March 11, 2003.
Last season, Preissing, 26, played in 33 games for Krefeld of the German Elite League, posting seven points (one goal, six assists) with 32 penalty minutes.
In 2003-04, Preissing posted 19 points (two goals, 17 assists) in 69 games with the Sharks. He finished the season tied for fourth on the team in points (19) among defensemen. Preissing's strong first-year performance earned him the PlayStation "Sharks Rookie of the Year" Award. He also played in 11 of the Sharks 17 playoffs contests in their run to the Western Conference Finals.
"Tom was very good in 2003-04 and we're excited to have him back," said Wilson. "We expect big things from him and the new rules should serve him well."
In 2002-03, Preissing tallied 52 points (23 goals, 29 assists) and captained his college squad, the Colorado College Tigers, to the WCHA regular season championship. His achievements earned him NCAA First Team All-American honors. In addition, Preissing was a finalist for the Hobey Baker Memorial Award, given to the most outstanding player in college hockey.
The six-foot, 205-pound native of Arlington Heights, Illinois was originally signed by San Jose as a free agent on April 4, 2003.
ROOKIE TOURNAMENT The annual Rookie Tournament between the future stars of San Jose, Anaheim, Phoenix and Los Angeles will take place from September 7-11 at Logitech Ice at San Jose. There will be two games per day with the exception of Friday. A complete schedule will be released soon.
LOWRY BEGINS COACHING CAREER Calgary Hitmen General Manager and Head Coach Kelly Kisio announced that former Sharks player Dave Lowry is the Hitmen's new Assistant Coach.
"Dave brings a wealth of experience and hockey knowledge to our organization," said Kisio. "His qualities of leadership and commitment were well recognized by the teams he played for in the NHL. We expect Dave will enhance our organization by bringing these qualities to the Hitmen."