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New Jersey Devils trade rights to Alexander Korolyuk to Sharks

Korolyuk had 62 goals and 80 assists over parts of six seasons with the Sharks. He played his best hockey under current San Jose coach Ron Wilson, scoring 37 points while helping the Sharks to the Western Conference final in 2003-04.

"He's a guy that has certainly given us a spark in the past," Sharks general manager Doug Wilson said. "We know he's always kept himself in great shape.

"I asked him if he wants to come back and compete for a Stanley Cup, and he said, 'Definitely.' "

The Devils acquired Korolyuk on Oct. 1 from the Sharks, but never expected him to play in New Jersey. San Jose made the deal because Korolyuk wanted to return to his native Russia, and the Devils sent retiring defenceman Vladimir Malakhov and a first-round pick to San Jose to ease a salary-cap crunch.

But when the Sharks spoke to Korolyuk, he was eager to return to San Jose, where he still owns a home, even though he has played well for Vityaz Chekhov this season.

Korolyuk will be in San Jose by Sunday for a medical examination. Since he's already in excellent hockey shape, Korolyuk might even join the injury-depleted Sharks during their eight-game road trip before their next home game Feb. 26.

"He knows exactly what our expectations are," Doug Wilson said. "And Ronnie got the most out of him of anybody.

"He's very excited to be here."


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