- Editor's Note: Sheng Peng will be a regular contributor to NBC Sports California’s Sharks coverage. You can read more of his coverage on San Jose Hockey Now, listen to him on the San Jose Hockey Now Podcast, and follow him on Twitter at @Sheng_Peng.
It will be a much different-looking Sharks squad this fall, mainly because Erik Karlsson won’t be around anymore.
Expectations are modest, to be kind, with many predicting the Sharks will finish dead-last in the league. For example, Bovada has San Jose with the worst Stanley Cup odds in the league, tied with the Montreal Canadiens and Arizona Coyotes.
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Of course, for some Sharks fans, that would be good news, as they’re more interested in the team’s 2024 NHL Draft position than a futile chase for the playoffs.
But that’s not acceptable for a proud, older locker room, led by Sharks stalwarts Logan Couture, Tomas Hertl and Marc-Edouard Vlasic, and incoming veterans Anthony Duclair, Mikael Granlund, Mike Hoffman and Jan Rutta.
“I don’t think people are giving us a chance this year. There’s gonna be motivation in this dressing room,” Matt Benning said. “There’s a lot of guys that don’t like what people have to say about us.”