After the 2018-19 season, Patrick Marleau’s second after signing a free-agent contract with the Maple Leafs, the working assumption was that if Toronto could chart out a path back to San Jose, it would be able to shed the $6 million-plus in committed salary that frankly needed to be allocated elsewhere.
Agreeing to waive his no-trade provision on the draft floor to facilitate a trade to the Hurricanes, a brief stop in Carolina was all Marleau needed before indeed making his way back west.
Bought out by the Hurricanes, the wheels were in motion. But two months later, Marleau remains no closer to landing in his preferred destination and the city he built a home in for 19 seasons before deciding to take the plunge with a three-year free-agent contract with the Leafs.
Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman caught up with Marleau’s agent Pat Brisson on Wednesday, who said at this time “the fit is not there” between his client and the Sharks. Brisson added that Marleau still wants to play and that he’s pursuing opportunities elsewhere.
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.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) September 4, 2019
Marleau is coming off his least productive season since breaking in as a rookie more than two decades ago with San Jose. He scored 16 goals and 37 points working out of the Maple Leafs’ bottom six.
It’s been several seasons now since Marleau lived up to the expectations tied to his salary, but with the money cleared completely off the books, Marleau is in a position to offer value on a low-cost contract while raking in the rest of his bought-out salary.
It’s been rumoured that the Edmonton Oilers and Arizona Coyotes have shown interest.
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