HOCKEY

San Jose acquired forward Jack Studnicka from the Vancouver Canucks

Dec 17, 2023, 4:56 AM | Updated: 7:13 am

Goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky #72 of the Florida Panthers stops a second period shot by Jack Studnick...

SUNRISE, FL - OCTOBER 21: Goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky #72 of the Florida Panthers stops a second period shot by Jack Studnicka #23 of the Vancouver Canucks at the Amerant Bank Arena on October 21, 2023 in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

(Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

The NHL trade deadline is nearly three months away, but the Colorado Avalanche and San Jose Sharks already have been active.

Both teams made deals this week, with one adding a player and the other subtracting one. San Jose acquired forward Jack Studnicka from the Vancouver Canucks on Friday, while Colorado traded Tomas Tatar to the Seattle Kraken.

Studnicka, 24, is expected to be active when the Sharks visit Denver to play the Avalanche on Sunday night.

Studnicka has recorded 16 points (six goals, 10 assists) in 90 career games between Vancouver and the Boston Bruins. The Sharks could use some offense after losing 1-0 to the Arizona Coyotes in the first contest of a short two-game road trip.

“Just a very skilled player,” San Jose coach David Quinn said of Studnicka. “A guy that certainly was highly thought of as a prospect. He’s been in two organizations where they’ve been really forward-heavy, so I don’t know if he’s really had the opportunity that he was looking for, to the fault of nobody.

“He’s still a young player. He’s got some good size to him, and he’s got skills, so we’re really excited to have him.”

The Sharks have steadied the waters after beginning the season 0-10-1. The one point came as a result of a shootout loss to the Avalanche in the second game of the season, and since the rough start they are 9-8-2.

They’ll face a Colorado team coming off a 6-2 loss at Winnipeg on Saturday night that snapped a two-game winning streak. The Avalanche fell behind 3-0 early and never recovered, but the positives were they avoided being blanked for the fourth time this season and Nathan MacKinnon extended his point streak to 14 games (six goals, 17 assists).

MacKinnon also has had at least one point in all 15 home games this season.

Tatar signed with the Avalanche in mid-September and made the team out of training camp. He started on the fourth line but bounced throughout the lineup, even getting time on the first line centered by MacKinnon.

Tatar didn’t have a goal until a win over the Calgary Flames on Monday night, and the play of Ben Meyers and Joel Kiviranta in short stints with the team made him expendable.

Also for the Avalanche, the pipeline to the AHL affiliate, the Colorado Eagles, has been valuable, especially with the teams being about 50 miles apart.

“That (depth) is what every team’s striving for,” coach Jared Bednar said. “You’re going to need more than just your roster of 20 to 23 to get through the season successfully. And that’s why an AHL team is so important. They’re right up the road and we’re in constant contact with the players and the staff there. The message that’s being sent to those players is the exact same as here, especially when they go down to work on things.”

–Field Level Media

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