The speculation can end. The Sharks traded forward Ryane Clowe to the New York Rangers on Tuesday, in exchange for three draft picks.
The Sharks have acquired a second round pick in 2013, a third round pick in 2013 (previously belonging to Florida), and a conditional second round pick in 2014. The conditional pick is contingent upon Clowe re-signing with the Rangers or if New York wins two playoff rounds. If neither occurs, it becomes a fifth round pick in 2014.
The Sharks now hold ten picks in the 2013 NHL Draft, including their first round pick and three in the second round.
Clowe had to waive his no-trade clause, and agreed to go to New York.
Sharks general manager Doug Wilson said in a statement: "Ryane is a tremendously respected player and teammate, and an individual of outstanding character. These deals involving players who have spent a substantial amount of time in and contributed much to San Jose are difficult, but it's also important for us to get value for a player who is set to be an unrestricted free agent. We want to wish Ryane and his family the best in the future and thank them for everything they have done for the Sharks organization and the San Jose community.”
In 28 games this season, the 6-foot-2-inch, 225-pound left wing has no goals and 11 assists and a team-high 77 penalty minutes.
Clowe, 30, was drafted by the Sharks in the sixth round of the 2001 NHL Entry Draft. In 423 career games with the Sharks in parts of eight seasons, Clowe has 101 goals and 170 assists for 271 points and 567 penalty minutes. His best year with the Sharks was in 2010-11, when he had a career-high 24 goals and 62 points.
Clowe is in the final year of a four-year, $14.5 million contract, and is due to become an unrestricted free agent this offseason.