With the San Jose Sharks not included in the return to play postseason and the start of the 2020-21 campaign still swirling in a tornado of uncertainty, Tim Heed has made a move to secure his immediate future. The pending unrestricted free agent has signed a contract with HC Lugano of the Swiss NLA, but it is not for the entire season. In fact, the deal only covers through November 15, 2020 at which point Heed will have a better idea of the NHL’s plan and can make a decision on where he wants to play the season.
Now 29, Heed has played in 105 games for the Sharks over the last four seasons including 38 in 2019-20. One of those coveted right-handed defensemen, he has provided some steady minutes while not really getting the chance to show what he can do offensively. A draft pick of the Anaheim Ducks in 2010, Heed stayed in Sweden until 2016 when he debuted for the San Jose Barracuda, recording 56 points in 55 games. His rocked-fueled slapshot had a lot to do with that offensive production, but in San Jose behind point-producing dynamos like Erik Karlsson and Brent Burns it’s hard to get much of an opportunity to release it.
There will likely be interest in Heed from around the NHL, if only as an inexpensive depth option. He’ll have to decide whether he still wants to compete in North America after a stint back in Europe.