August 02 2009 04:13PM
The Vancouver Canucks have already had a few departures from last year's club, mostly through free agency. As the start to the season approaching, more changes are coming. So who's else is gone? Here's who I think has their ticket stamped for a ride out of town.
Already this off-season we've seen a number of role players and farm hands bolt for greener pastures. Jason Jaffray, Jason Krog, Rob Davison, Curtis Sanford and Jason LaBarbera have all signed with other clubs. Gone. It's well known that the club has no intention of signing UFA Taylor Pyatt. Gone.
So who's next?
Jannik Hansen is an RFA who's demanding a one-way contract. Given the number of guys already slated into third and fourth lines for the Canucks, they have room for him if he's set on a one-way deal.
Hansen - gone.
Mason Raymond is another victim of the build-up of players on the third line. He has failed to blossom into the speedy sniper the Canucks need, and he simply no longer fits into Vancouver's long-term plans. Look for Raymond to be traded before the start of the season.
Raymond - gone.
Pavol Demitra was a decent pick-up for the Canucks last season. As they try to re-tune their top two lines, Demitra is going to end up on his way out. He's an aging veteran and the Canucks need to get younger. I see Demitra being moved at or before the trading deadline.
Demitra - gone.
Who else is gone?
Well, that will be up to Magic Mike. only he knows for sure. The rest of us are left wondering about the other tricks he may have up his tailored sleeve to improve this squadron before the season starts.
It might not feel like it on the August long weekend but the season is rapidly approaching.