Latest Sharks buzz we heard at 2024 NHL Draft in Vegas

Latest Sharks buzz we heard at 2024 NHL Draft in Vegas originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

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.

LAS VEGAS — Do the Sharks have a Jumbo-sized surprise for the 2024 NHL Draft on Friday night?

Joe Thornton is in Vegas, to help celebrate the Sharks having the No. 1 overall pick of the draft.

San Jose Hockey Now had dinner Thursday night with the family of a 2024 draft-eligible player who were on the same Las Vegas-bound plane as Thornton.

Will the 1997 first overall pick announce the 2024 first overall pick? Stay tuned. …

We know the Sharks will select Celebrini No. 1, and yes, according to SJHN’s sources, the strong belief is he will turn pro for the 2024-25 campaign. But who will the Sharks pick at No. 11, the selection acquired Thursday for the No. 14 and No. 42 picks?

Two league sources believe the Sharks moved up to target a high-end defenseman, though one conceded, “[Cole] Eiserman could be real.”

There’s some buzz the Sharks are jumping the line for the polarizing sniper, who was Celebrini’s teammate at Shattuck-St. Mary’s in Minnesota. …

Speaking of polarizing, SJHN learned a fascinating tidbit about Sharks No. 1 defenseman Mario Ferraro, who is seen around the league as either a second-pairing blueliner stuck in an awful situation in San Jose or just a bottom-pairing D on a legitimate playoff team.

Ferraro was available during the 2023 NHL trade deadline, and the Sharks wanted a first-round pick and a prospect in exchange … and they almost got it.

Elliotte Friedman previously has reported that the Carolina Hurricanes made a strong offer for Ferraro in 2022-23. A league source confirmed that offer was a second-round pick and left-handed center Jack Drury.

A historically bad Sharks season later, the source mused, “If they trade [Ferraro], it’s going to be for way less than what they had on the table two years ago at the trade deadline.” …

Speaking of hard-nosed, the Sharks traded defenseman Kyle Burroughs to the Los Angeles Kings for lunch-pail winger Carl Grundstrom.

“Grundstrom is pretty straightforward,” an NHL scout told SJHN. “North-south winger, pretty good shot actually, just doesn’t hit the net a ton or make a lot of plays. Can get hot from time to time and score some. Physical on forecheck.

“He’s a bottom-line wing, third line at his best. One track-minded with it. Skate, hit, change.”

Over the last three seasons, Grundstrom has scored at a 15-goal 82-game pace, so he should provide secondary scoring to the Sharks’ bottom six. He also fits the profile of “hard to play against” player that Sharks general manager Mike Grier has concentrated on so far this offseason, such as Barclay Goodrow and Ty Dellandrea. …

Finally, so why did Grier fire David Quinn?

That surprise dismissal in April still was a topic of conversation this week. It might be water under the bridge with Ryan Warsofsky announced as head coach last week, but SJHN learned from multiple sources that there was little communication between Grier and Quinn over the last two seasons — basically the duration of their GM-head coach partnership.

The reason for that is unclear — that could be just Grier’s management style — but it certainly paints a different picture of what was believed to be a lock-step Boston University-rooted relationship.

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