Local hockey fans, feel free to cue up Sister Sledge’s “We Are Family” and interchange your teal and orange merchandise, because the Bay Area’s two hockey teams have renewed their union.
The San Jose Sharks and the San Francisco Bulls announced Thursday that they have re-upped their affiliation for the 2013-2014 season.
Bulls president and head coach Pat Curcio expressed his excitement in a release:
“Our first season created a mutually beneficial relationship. The Sharks provided us with high-quality players, who helped contribute to our team’s appearance in the playoffs. We are excited about the opportunity to develop Sharks prospects while putting a winning product on the ice.”
A beneficial relationship indeed, especially given that both teams share a rich history in just their first year of affiliation, including playing at the archaic Cow Palace. The Sharks played their first two NHL seasons at the Bulls’ current home before moving to San Jose in 1993.
Sharks GM Doug Wilson said via press release:
“We had an extremely positive relationship with the Bulls last season as a development vehicle for players within our system and we look forward to continuing that agreement.”
Sharks COO John Tortora elaborated:
“It’s important for us as an organization to help grow the game of hockey at all levels in the Bay Area and the Bulls have done a great job putting a quality product on the ice.”
Bulls fans are familiar with Sharks prospects including Mikael Tam (3 goals, 9 assists, 67 PIM), Tommy Grant (1 goal, 4 assists, 16 PIM) and Yanni Gourde (4 goals, 6 assists, 25 PIM), as well as goaltenders Thomas Heemskerk (14-17-1-2, 3.10 GAA) and Taylor Nelson (11-20-0-5, 3.53 GAA).
San Jose was also responsible for placing Marek Viedensky (8 goals, 11 assists, 59 PIM) and Daniil Tarasov (3 goals, 11 assists, 48 PIM) in San Francisco at the beginning of the 2012-2013 season.
Viedensky recently signed a one-year contract with San Jose, while Tarasov ended last season signing a two-year contract with the Sharks.
The Sharks will also maintain relations with their AHL affiliate, the Worcester Sharks in Massachusetts, throughout the upcoming season.