Former Sharks defenseman Dan Boyle has found a new home with the New York Rangers on a two-year deal worth $9 million, according to multiple reports.
Earlier this offseason Sharks general manager Doug Wilson told Boyle, who turns 38 on July 12, that he would not be a part of the team’s plans moving forward and traded his rights to the Islanders for a fifth round draft pick in 2015.
After not signing with the Islanders, it took less than two hours for Boyle, who was reportedly pursued by several teams as an unrestricted free agent, to agree to terms with the Rangers.
On May 16, shortly after Wilson’s announcement that he would not return, Boyle said: “I still think I have a lot of good years left in me. … I’m obviously crushed and hurt with what’s happened, but I’m a competitor. I want to win the Stanley Cup. That’s what I’m excited about. I’m looking forward to the next opportunity.”
Boyle, acquired by the Sharks from Tampa Bay on July 4, 2008, is the Sharks’ all-time leading scorer among defenseman with 269 points in 431 games.
One reason Boyle may have been drawn to the 2014 Eastern Conference champion Rangers is friend and former teammate Marty St. Louis, with whom he won a Stanley Cup in 2004 with Tampa Bay. Boyle and St. Louis were both undrafted, and followed similar paths to stardom.
“Marty is the ultimate competitor. I respect him so much,” Boyle said this past November. “His accomplishments speak for themselves. He’s an amazing hockey player, and to see what he’s doing still is not surprising to me because I know how hard he works. I see a lot of him in me, and vice versa. We’re both fierce competitors and have had to fight our way to get to where we are. He’s just awesome.”
* * *
A pair of former Sharks found new homes in Pittsburgh on the first day of free agency. Defenseman Christian Ehrhoff, bought out by the Sabres, signed a one-year contract with Pittsburgh, as did goaltender Thomas Greiss, who has moved on from Phoenix.
Additionally, Marty Havlat, whose contract was bought out by the Sharks, reportedly agreed to a one-year, $1.5 million contract with the New Jersey Devils.