Last season, the Sharks asked McCarthy to take on more of a scoring role in Worcester and he responded, potting 20 goals and 47 points in 65 games. He also had a bit of snarl to his game with 47 penalty minutes and was a plus-7.
“I was asked to step into a more offensive role, which I love, and was fortunate to have success doing it,” said the 6-foot-1, 200-pounder. “The team has added a few offensive pieces this year, veterans who have proven they can put points on the board, so I don’t know if my role will change or not. Like I said, whatever they want me to do, I’ll do.”
McCarthy spent the summer skating with fellow Bostonians at his alma mater, Boston University, to get ready for the upcoming season. He was also kept abreast of the negotiations between the NHL Players Association and the league’s owners by Joe Pavelski, San Jose’s player rep.
For right now, he’s focused on making himself the best player he can be in Worcester, whose website proclaims ‘We’re playing hockey â€” no matter what.’ The Sharks opens their season next weekend with a pair of games in Norfolk, Va; their home opener is Saturday, Oct. 20 against the Albany Devils.
“I assume the San Jose management and coaches will have a stronger presence in Worcester while (NHL players) are locked out,” said McCarthy. “It’s another chance for me to prove myself to them and what I can do. Any chance to have them watch you play is a good thing.”