FT. LAUDERDALE -– Sharks general manager Doug Wilson said last week that there was a “high percentage” chance that his club would be adding to its crop of picks for the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.
According to a source, that’s what they’ve done. San Jose has gained a third round pick on Saturday in addition to its seven others, perhaps as compensation for Todd McLellan, who moved on to Edmonton despite having one year left on his contract with the Sharks. Edmonton owns the 86th overall choice.
The Sharks also own the 39th overall selection in the second round, one fourth round pick, two each in the fifth and seventh rounds, and one in the sixth.
San Jose’s third round choice was traded to Philadelphia last summer in exchange for Tye McGinn, who was waived in March and finished the season with Arizona.
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Wilson and Sharks scouting director Tim Burke seemed pleased with first round selection Timo Meier, in the least surprising development of the evening.
“Physically, he’s in good shape. He’s a power winger,” Burke said. “For a guy who has good size, he can kill penalties, play on the power play, and is in all situations. He’s a winger that has top six potential.”
Wilson said: “He can play a hard game, but he also has a lot of offense to him. He’s got a little spirit to him, too. He’s a good kid.”
Wilson praised Meier’s ability to get to the front of the net, as evidenced by his 23 power play goals in juniors last season.
“He can play on the inside, go to the post, stay there, stay in the crease. But, he also can create offense.”
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Arizona’s third overall pick was a hot topic leading up to Friday, but the Coyotes ended up using it for center Dylan Strome.
The Sharks kicked the tires on the pick, but apparently nothing was ever close.
“We touched base with them probably about a week ago, but nothing recently,” Wilson said. “We were pretty comfortable at nine.”
The Sharks explored moving out of the ninth position. In the past two years, they traded up to select Mirco Mueller in 2013 and traded down before choosing Nikolay Goldobin last year.
“We looked at both because you’re always prepared to see who falls, but Timo is one of the guys we wanted and predicted in that [spot],” Wilson said. “If he hadn’t been there, we might have moved out of that position.”
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Indications are that the Kevin Bieksa-to-San Jose trade that was widely reported on early on Friday is dead.
Wilson denied the deal, saying: “I don’t know where you guys get this stuff.”
Canucks general manager Jim Benning also called the discussions “not accurate,” according to TSN radio.