The San Jose Sharks were busy on Saturday as free agency began in the NHL. Entering July 1st, many had identified Joe Thornton as one of the key players in the free-agency market. He could certainly be a tad overblown at this late stage of his career, especially following the 2016/17 season which saw him largely ineffective. However, that didn't stop the Sharks from signing Thornton with contract details that weren't readily available at the time of writing. Spotrac does confirm that he signed a one-year deal with San Jose while Martin Jones, the Sharks' goaltender, signed a lucrative long-term deal.

Joe Thornton had trouble scoring last year

Regarding Thornton, his 2016/17 season left a lot to be desired on the scoring front.

While he was a point-per-game guy in the 2015/16 season, in the most recently completed season he had just 50 points in 79 games. Furthermore, he was very light on direct scoring, only tallying seven goals whereas he had tallied 19 in the previous season. A short-term deal does give him a chance to re-establish himself for free agency again in 2018. Likewise, it doesn't put the Sharks on the hook for a lengthy deal, keeping in mind that Thornton is 37 years old. If his dip in offensive production is at all age-related then the dip is more likely to continue as opposed to reverse.

The Sharks also signed Martin Jones, their goalkeeper. Jones is just 27 years old and certainly appears to be at the peak of his powers. He appeared in 65 games in each of the last two seasons, tallying 72 victories during that time frame.

Top Videos of the Day

He was impressive in the 2016 Stanley Cup playoffs, posting a 2.16 goals-against average in leading San Jose to the finals. The Sharks did lose in the first round of the 2017 playoffs, but it wasn't really for Jones' part. He posted a 1.75 goals-against average against the Edmonton Oilers in the six-game series. Spotrac states that Jones' contract is worth $34,500,000 for an average salary of $5,750,000 per season over the next six years. The year-by-year totals vary with $3,000,000 his contract size in 2017/18. In locking in Jones, the Sharks have a quality goaltender locked in for his athletic prime years.

Vlasic contract questionable

The Sharks also signed 30-year-old Marc-Edouard Vlasic to a long-term deal. As a defenseman, Vlasic isn't known for his scoring touch. But the Sharks did ante up for Vlasic and for the long term, offering $56M over eight years to the defenseman. That is an amount and time period that is sure to draw some mixed reactions from supporters of the San Jose Sharks. That's a ton of money for a low-scoring defenseman that didn't have a noteworthy plus/minus in the last season (+4). The tail end of the eight-year deal could hurt the Sharks in the long run as they will be paying a lot for this defenseman even when he is in his late 30s.