The San Jose Sharks have signed unrestricted free agent forward Joel Ward to a three-year deal.
The team announced the signing via twitter on Friday, three days into NHL free agency.
“Joel is a quality veteran player who can score but also plays an extremely hard-nosed brand of hockey,” Sharks general manager Doug Wilson said in a team press release. “He meshes well with our core group of forwards and has a strong track record of playing his best hockey at crucial times of the season.”
The release also included a comment from new head coach Peter DeBoer:
“Joel is an identity player in that he plays exactly the way I want our team to play … He’s big, strong, fast and hard to play against. That’s exactly what we are looking for.”
Ward, 34, has spent the past four seasons in Washington, and played in all 82 games for the Capitals last season (his second consecutive year without missing a game) tallying 19 goals and 34 points. He also co-led the team in playoff points with nine. The North York, Ont., native made his NHL debut as an undrafted free agent with the Minnesota Wild in 2006-07, followed by three seasons with the Nashville Predators prior to joining the Capitals in 2011.
July 3, 2015