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Sharks acquire goalies Vanecek, Cooley in deadline day trades

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Sharks general manager Mike Grier had quite a busy NHL trade deadline day.

After a blockbuster deal that sent All-Star Tomáš Hertl to the Vegas Golden Knights, San Jose made a pair of trades involving three different net minders.

The Sharks traded goalie Kaapo Kähkönen to the New Jersey Devils in exchange for goalie Vitek Vanecek and a 2025 seventh-round draft pick, San Jose announced Friday.

Kähkönen joined the Sharks in March 2022 in a trade that sent defenseman Jacob Middleton and a fifth-round draft pick to the Minnesota Wild.

The 27-year-old goaltender started 74 games for San Jose across three seasons, posting a 17-46-11 record with an .892 save percentage.

Vanecek was drafted by the Washington Capitals with the No. 39 overall selection in the 2014 NHL Draft.

The 28-year-old has started 152 games in his NHL career with a 91-42-17 record and a .905 save percentage.

Vanecek started 29 games for the New Jersey Devils during the 2023-24 NHL season, posting a 17-9-3 record and an .890 save percentage.

Grier spoke to reporters after the trade deadline and said it is unlikely Vanecek plays this season, though the team expects him to be healthy for the start of the 2024-25 season.

The veteran goalkeeper also is reunited with former teammate Mackenzie Blackwood in San Jose.

However, that was not the only move Grier and the Sharks made Friday that involved acquiring a net minder, with San Jose also sending the Buffalo Sabres a 2025 seventh-round selection in exchange for goalie Devin Cooley, the team announced Friday.

Cooley is a Los Gatos, Calif. native who played for the Jr. Sharks while growing up in the South Bay.

The 26-year-old goaltender became just the third player ever to join the organization after playing for the Jr. Sharks.

Cooley signed with the Sabres as a free agent in July 2023 and made 14 appearances this season for the Rochester Americans of the AHL, posting a 6-6-2 record with an .891 save percentage.

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