It must be a pretty dizzying summer for Patrick Sharp. From Cup win to near certainty he would have been shipped at the draft, then he wasn’t, then Saad was, and then he might stay, then he might not, then a few of the possible destinations he would have had on his list dried up. The question is what happens now.
On the surface, there are legit hockey reasons to keep Sharp around. If Bickell is indeed flogged to anyone who will take him, along with Versteeg, the Hawks simply won’t have anyone to play the left side. Whichever of Dano or Teuvo doesn’t play center would be more effective on the right (seen it with both of them last season already). Viktor Tikhonov is probably going to play on the left, or at least will be tried there in camp. Panarin also plays left wing, but you would be hard pressed to think Quenneville is going to go to battle with two inexperienced kids as his only scoring left wings.