In a perfect world, the San Jose Sharks' contract extension announcement that kicked off the weekend would have included one more player.
As impressive as it was that San Jose GM Doug Wilson was able to persuade star forwards Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau to stick around for three more years in deals that were reasonable in length and in dollar amount, there was a name missing from that announcement.
Dan Boyle’s contract is still set to expire after this season. And, although his name isn’t as synonymous with the Sharks as the duo that signed -- considering he started his career with the Florida Panthers and won a Stanley Cup with the Tampa Bay Lightning -- Boyle has played more career games with San Jose than with the Bolts.
He has become part of the fabric of the franchise and wants to stay. He’s also 37 years old, a point Wilson highlighted in a conference call talking about the Thornton and Marleau signings.
Boyle's age complicates things but hasn’t closed the lines of communication between the Sharks and Boyle’s camp.
“I talked to Doug [Wilson] yesterday,” said Boyle’s agent, George Bazos, when we chatted Sunday afternoon. “We’ll continue to talk. Both sides want to get something done.” Which leads us to our first “Next Question” this week:
What will Dan Boyle’s next contract look like?
First, it’s safe to assume that a Boyle deal signed on the open market would look considerably different from anything he might sign with the Sharks. This past summer, Sergei Gonchar got a two-year deal worth $10 million to sign with the Stars. He was 39 years old when he signed it.