<
>

Sharks acquire Shelley from Jackets for sixth-round draft pick in '09

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- The San Jose Sharks bulked up for the
stretch run Tuesday night, acquiring enforcer Jody Shelley from the
Columbus Blue Jackets for a sixth-round draft pick in 2009.

Shelley, a 6-foot-4 left wing who's recognized as one of the
NHL's toughest fighters, has no points and 44 penalty minutes in 31
games with the Blue Jackets this season. He racked up 1,025 penalty
minutes while spending all of his 5½ pro seasons with the Jackets,
but hadn't suited up for Columbus since Jan. 12.

"He's adding some sandpaper to our lineup," Sharks general
manager Doug Wilson said. "We've looked at that for a while this
year with Ryane Clowe out. Jody, we know a lot about him. He makes
players on other teams uncomfortable, and he adds an element of
comfort to your own players."

Shelley will join the Sharks on Wednesday before their game
against the Calgary Flames.

The Sharks have been without two of their most physical players -- forward Clowe and defenseman Brad Norton -- for most of the season
because of injuries, and Wilson cited the overall toughness of
Western Conference rivals Detroit and Anaheim as a prime reason to
make the deal.

Wilson pursued Shelley in a trade earlier this season, but
couldn't land him. The Sharks have been without a designated
enforcer since trading Scott Parker to Colorado last February.

"I think we've missed it since Scotty Parker left," Wilson
said. "You've got to win in many different ways, and Jody brings
something to the table that we need."

Shelley led the NHL with 249 penalty minutes during the 2002-03
season, and he led Columbus in penalty minutes during four of the
previous five campaigns. He's a favorite of hockey fight
aficionados, with several of his best bouts -- including a memorable
scrap with Parker -- available on YouTube.
Shelley's departure was announced after Columbus' 4-2 loss to
Phoenix. He is the franchise's career leader in penalty minutes and
a big fan favorite for his bruising play.