7:17PM: The San Jose Sharks have confirmed via their training camp roster that Bailey will be attending training camp on a PTO.
According to Elite Prospects, the San Jose Sharks have reportedly invited forward Justin Bailey to training camp on a PTO. Bailey was previously a member of the Edmonton Oilers organization, having spent last season in the AHL with the Bakersfield Condors. The 28-year-old was a decent depth scoring option for the Condors last season posting 19 goals and 13 assists in 58 AHL games.
Normally those wouldn’t be the type of AHL numbers that would get a look in the NHL, but nothing has been normal about the San Jose Sharks offseason and Bailey figures to add some size and grit to a training camp that is lacking both of those attributes.
Bailey was once a sought-after prospect back when he was drafted in the second round by the Buffalo Sabres at the 2013 NHL entry draft. Many scouts marveled at his ability to get around the ice, a rare trait for a player of his size. But Bailey was never able to put it all together at the NHL level posting just five goals and four assists in 82 games broken up across seven NHL seasons.
In the AHL, Bailey flirted with being a point a game player for several seasons including in 2019-20 while a member of the Utica Comets. That season Bailey posted 28 goals and 19 assists in just 53 games but had his season cut short by the pandemic. Bailey bounced back nicely two years later when AHL hockey was able to resume play under normal circumstances posting 15 goals and 12 assists in 30 games.
Although he is a long shot to make the Sharks, Bailey should be able to earn an AHL job if he does accept the offer for a tryout. Bailey could possibly even earn a two-way contract with the club if he is to have a good showing at training camp. His size will always be something that gets teams attention and he can play the power forward very well at the AHL level.