With the 2022 NHL trade deadline in the rear-view mirror, where the Sharks acquired goaltender Kaapo Kahkonen, San Jose now has one of the deepest pools of netminders in the NHL.
Prior to the Kahkonen trade, the Sharks already had a flux of goalies in the system, and now with the newest addition, San Jose’s crease is loaded with talent and promise.
Acquired this past offseason, James Reimer has been the most consistent part of the team this season, stealing multiple games with spectacular performances. The 34-year-old, in his 13th NHL season, has posted a 16-13-0 record with a 2.80 goals-against average to go along with a .916 save percentage. Reimer has been the clear MVP of the Sharks this season, while cementing himself as San Jose’s go-to netminder. The 2006 fourth-round pick has seen his share of pucks coming at him this year, playing in 16 games where he had to turn away at least 30 shots, with three of those having faced over 40 shots.
Acquired this past offseason in a trade with the Arizona Coyotes, Adin Hill is having a solid first season with the Sharks, but unfortunately has been dealing with some injuries throughout the year. The 25-year-old Comox, British Columbia native holds a 10-11-1 record with a 2.66 goals-against average and a .906 save percentage. The 2015 third-round pick has shown promise, posting two shutouts this season and shutting down one of the NHL’s top offenses, the Calgary Flames, twice by turning aside 77 of the 81 shots he faced en route to two wins. While Adin has shown promise, he has also show inconsistency throughout his first season with the Sharks. Standing at 6-foot-6 and 214 pounds, Hill will look to end the season strong when he returns from his injury.
The newest addition to the Sharks goalie pool, Kaapo Kahkonen, has shown that he can have an immediate impact in the crease for San Jose, while having a very high upside. The 25-year-old has recorded a 12-8-0 record with a 2.87 goals-against average this season, paired with a .910 save percentage. While his numbers have slightly dwindled recently, the Helsinki, Finland native has shown that he can win at any level. Kaapo set the Minnesota Wild franchise record for most consecutive wins by a rookie last year, winning seven-straight games in net. Prior to playing in the NHL, Kahkonen was awarded the 2020 Aldege “Baz” Bastien Memorial Award, given to the AHL’s most outstanding goalie of the year. He also led Finland to a gold medal at the 2016 World Juniors, where he went a perfect 4-0-0.
The Sharks rookie goaltender got his shot in the NHL this season, playing in seven games while James Reimer and Adin Hill were both injured, showing promise that he is developing into an NHL-level talent. The 24-year-old has spent most of the season in the AHL with the San Jose Barracuda, where he holds a 4-7-0 record with a .866 save percentage and a 4.17 goals-against average. While these numbers are a bit rough, it is worth noting that the Barracuda have had some issues on the defensive-side of the puck all season. While with the Sharks, the Calgary, Alberta native put up a record of 1-2-0 while achieving a .901 save percentage with a 3.35 goals-against average. In his first career NHL win this season against the Los Angeles Kings, Sawchenko turned away 33 of the 36 shots he faced in a game that the Sharks could have easily lost if it wasn’t for his brilliance in net.
Acquired only a few weeks ago when James Reimer and Adin Hill were both sidelined due to injuries, Alex Stalock made his return to San Jose. Drafted by the Sharks in the 2005 NHL Draft, the 34-year-old has spent time with the Sharks and Minnesota Wild over the course of his 10-year NHL career. The Saint Paul, Minnesota native only played in one game with the Sharks in his second stint with the team, where he gave up six goals on 28 shots in a loss to the Nashville Predators. After being sent down to the Barracuda, Stalock has played in one game where he recorded a 40-save shutout against the Tucson Roadrunners. Prior to his return to the Sharks organization, Alex was playing with the Bakersfield Condors this season where he posted a 3-2-0 record with a 3.81 goals-against average, while having a .862 save percentage.
Starting off the season in the ECHL with the Orlando Solar Bears, Zachary Émond was reassigned to the Barracuda in early December. With the Solar Bears, the 21-year-old held a record of 6-4-0, while recording a .885 save percentage with a 3.61 goals-against average. Since being reassigned to the Barracuda, the 2018 sixth-round pick carries a 3-2-2 record with a 3.95 goals-against average and a .885 save percentage. With Alexei Melnichuk being dealt to the Tampa Bay Lightning, Émond should be in net more often for the Barracuda, giving the young goaltender a chance to show his development.
Selected in the third round of the 2022 NHL Draft, Benjamin Gaudreau is looking like he could be a major steal for the Sharks. The 19-year-old is currently playing in the OHL with the Sarnia Sting, where he holds a 17-12-4 record with a .895 save percentage and a 3.59 goals-against average. Gaudreau has recorded two shutouts this season, while being awarded OHL Goaltender of the Week once and Sharks Prospect of the Week twice. The Corbeil, Ontario native also led team Canada to a gold medal in the 2021 World U-18 Championship, going a perfect 5-0-0. Ben has outstanding cross-crease, lateral movement with spectacular athleticism while staying calm and cool in net with outstanding positioning.
Acquiring his rights at the 2021 trade deadline, the Sharks added another young and promising goaltender to the organization in Magnus Chrona. Standing at 6-foot-5 and weighing 218 pounds, the big-bodied netminder has had a fantastic junior season with Denver University. The 21-year-old boasts a 24-8-1 record with a 2.20 goals-against average, along with a .908 save percentage. Chrona has led the Pioneers to a number one seed in the 2022 NCAA Hockey Tournament that starts this week. The Stockholm, Sweden native won the NCHC three stars award, recording six shutouts this season with three of them being in consecutive games. The 2018 fifth-round pick has shown excellence in all three years at Denver University, showcasing his high potential.
Selected by the Sharks in the third round of the 2015 NHL Draft, Mike Robinson has been a developing prospect in net while playing at the University of New Hampshire. The 24-year-old fifth-year senior posted a 12-14-0 record with a 2.61 goals-against average to go along with a .904 save percentage. The Bedford, New Hampshire native stands tall at 6-foot-4, the perfect height for an NHL goalie. Mike has seven shutouts over the course of his college career. The Sharks will need to make a decision on if they want to sign Robinson by August 15, 2022.