San Jose Sharks forward taking temporary leave of absence

SAN JOSE — Nico Sturm is taking a temporary leave of absence from the San Jose Sharks to attend to a personal family matter and will miss the next two games, the team announced Friday.

Sturm, a center, will miss the Sharks’ games on Monday in Vancouver and Wednesday in Seattle. In a statement, the Sharks said, “Out of respect to Nico’s privacy, the organization will not have any further comment.”

The Sharks have also loaned winger Danil Gushchin back to their AHL affiliate, the San Jose Barracuda.

Sturm, 28, has been San Jose’s third-line center for most of the season and has two assists in 17 games. He’s averaged close to 15 minutes of ice time per game, is also one of the Sharks’ leading penalty-killers, and has won a team-high 64.3 percent of his 224 faceoffs.

The Sharks requested and were granted non-roster status for Sturm as he begins his leave of absence. They now have 21 players on their roster and will be free to recall another forward from the Barracuda before they travel to Vancouver.

Sturm assisted on Mike Hoffman’s first-period goal Thursday as the Sharks went on to a 5-1 win over the St. Louis Blues at SAP Center, snapping a three-game losing streak and improving their record to 3-13-1.

Gushchin had one assist in two games with the Sharks since his recall from the Barracuda on Monday. The Barracuda hosts the Colorado Eagles tonight and Saturday.

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After the Sharks play Seattle, they return home to play the Montreal Canadiens on Nov. 24 and the Canucks on Nov. 25.

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Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment


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