The San Jose Sharks have signed international free agent Tony Sund to a one-year entry-level contract. The young defenseman was undrafted and played in Finland’s top league last season. GM Doug Wilson had this to say about his newest prospect:
Tony is a big, smooth-skating defenseman who uses a strong stick to take away passing lanes and to close plays quickly. He has tremendous vision that made him one of the top passers and playmakers from the back-end we saw this season. He has stepped his game up each of the past few years and really took a leap forward offensively this season. We really like the upside here with Tony, and think that his time spent with the Finnish National team over the past month will only help him grow his game.
Sund, 23, broke out this season in Finland, recording 35 points in 60 games while continuing to provide solid defense. The 6’3″ left-hander joins an organization that has made a splash in the undrafted market over the years, adding NHL talent like Radim Simek, Barclay Goodrow and Lukas Radil. Add that to the strong late-round drafting by Wilson’s team, and the Sharks have been able to maintain a high level of success for a long time.
That deep system may be a tough one to crack for Sund, but the defenseman comes in with a chance to compete right away. Erik Karlsson and Tim Heed are both scheduled to become unrestricted free agents this summer, while Joakim Ryan is arbitration eligible as a restricted free agent. If the Sharks aren’t able to retain some of them, they’ll need replacements like Sund in the near future.
He will be a restricted free agent after the 2019-20 season.