Since the franchise's least successful postseason effort in club history, San Jose Sharks fans have been waiting in anticipation for a statement, or better yet, an explanation of what action the Sharks ownership group was going to take with their head coach and general manager.
On Wednesday, Sharks Sports & Entertainment issued the following statement (h/t San Jose Mercury News):
"The on-ice results of our team this season are not acceptable to our fans, our organization or our ownership group. We will not lower our expectation that every San Jose Sharks team we put on the ice is capable of winning the Stanley Cup. Despite the fact that our team has experienced a tremendous amount of success over the past eight seasons, we are not satisfied with those results and neither is Doug. The ownership group has confidence that Doug will make the necessary changes to ensure our club remains among the NHL's elite franchises."
It's a typical statement you would expect from a club that's found itself in the Western Conference finals for the last two seasons, and one of course with their fair share of high-caliber players.
What most fans may not realize is something that was not in that statement.
After every season, general managers hold end-of-season meetings with players. This is to basically find out how they feel their play was, discuss incentive bonuses and of course focus on what will be done next season to improve the team. These meetings with the players usually last between 45 minutes to one hour.
Several of the end-of-season meetings lasted up to three hours this time.
The fact that these meetings lasted that long is more than alarming, especially if you are someone who understands the business side of the sport.
It would also hint that head coach Todd McLellan has lost his locker room, and his exit is almost guaranteed.
In this edition, I would like to outline five possible candidates that we could see succeed McLellan and replace him behind the Sharks bench next season.