WWYDW: Playoffs?

Jackson McDonald
January 11 2017 09:00AM

what would you do wednesday 

The Canucks find themselves in a bit of an odd scenario. They're on a bit of a run, so to speak, having won six in a row before dropping their latest contest in Calgary. That puts them right back in the thick of the playoff hunt, but also in the midst of a rebuild.

Even if the team were to make the playoffs this season, that doesn't mean the rebuild is complete. The Canucks are still in desperate need of young talent, and with expansion looming, would perhaps be best served dealing some of their older players for futures. That is, unless you believe the team can make a serious run.

So, this week's question is, do you deal vets for picks and prospects at the deadline, or hold on to your guys in hopes of making a prolonged postseason push, even if that means losing a good player for nothing?

Last week I asked: With Rodin healthy, where would you like to see him play? Would you break up the red-hot Baertschi-Horvat-Burrows line? Does he play with the twins? Or do you leave him out of the lineup in favour of someone else? 


Friendly Neighbourhood Canuck: 

I don't care what line he's on as long as it is on an actual line. Why not just keep Rodin with Bo/Baer and let Burrows get the 4th line going. Because outside of that one game in Tampa, it has produced a most nothing at all. Chaput would be nice as a 13th forward. Right now we have 14 forwards and given what we've seen from Willie in the past, he will not dress the 12 best on any night. But we shall see.. 

TD: 

There were comments that Rodin's conditioning is not ready which is why he is in the press box or playing limited minutes. Makes sense considering the injury. When healthy, play him with the Sedins. He is a good skater and can't do worse that Megna's 3 points in 22 games. Megna has done nothing with the Sedins and yet still plays there. 

Beefus: 

Could Megna, Gaunce, Skille or Chaput ever be the Swedish elite league MVP? I don't think so. Rodin should be given an extended look over any of those Canuck regulars. 

natevk: 

Put him with the twins. It literally would be very difficult for him to do any worse than Megna and Sutter have this season on the Sedins' wing.

He can also play left side so you could swap him for Chaput on the 4th line, or move Eriksson back with the Sedins and throw him in with Granlund and Sutter (although Eriksson is the only thing keeping Sutter above water).

Just get him in the lineup. 

SJ: 

I'm actually okay with him playing 4th line minutes for a while. Put him in for Skille, Chaput, Megna, or Gaunce (take your pick or rotate), with some 2nd unit PP time. I think 8-10 minutes a night for a while will give him a chance to find his legs and learn what it's like to play in the NHL, without too much expectations being placed on him. Because let's be honest, the 4th line has done next to nothing all year, so anything they do chip in at this point has to be seen as a bonus. 

Forever1915: 

Desjardins praising Rodin's skill and puck movement. "I don't think we've seen the best of him yet either." (From the preseason).

If Desjardins puts Rodin with 4th line pluggers and Rodin fails, Desjardins has only himself to blame. He didn't put Rodin in a position to succeed. A player with scoring skill needs to play with scoring linemates. That leaves Baertschi/Horvat or the Sedins. Rodin had success with Baertschi & Horvat in the preseason. Rodin also plays a net-driving, scoring game that could compliment the Sedins' cycle game. I'd rotate Rodin through both lines for a sustained amount of time and see where he's most effective. Failing that, he plays with Sutter. If he can't crack the Top 9, well, cross that bridge when you get there.

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#1 Burnabybob
January 11 2017, 09:29AM
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Rebuild. Rebuild. Rebuild. Anyone over 30 who doesn't have a no-trade clause should be considered possible trade bait. I would honestly even consider moving Chris Tanev. He's a good player, but the Canucks have an abundance of defensive defensemen, and he's the kind of player who could fetch a decent return, like a young forward or a high draft pick. Tanev is no spring chicken either - he's 27 and will probably be past his prime when the Canucks are seriously ready to compete again in 2-3 years.

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#2 Bud Poile
January 11 2017, 01:05PM
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@Bro Horvat

It's called a NTC.

Hamhuis refused to waive to Chicago and by the time his family made the decision to accept to go to Dallas they already secured Russell.

Back to fantasy land.

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#3 Dirty30
January 11 2017, 09:27AM
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Deal the vets.

1. This team needs an infusion of talent whether through drafting from picks obtained, prospects or a young roster player.

Particularly true since suitable players on waivers are passed by so often.

2. May be more fair to vets to let them go to contenders with the hope of a legitimate Cup run, not just one and done.

3. Given Benning's marketing talents, there won't be many trades anyway so likely the roster won't change and some guys will walk for nothing.

This is just such a waste with WD coaching. It's obvious he wants to win but his inability to adapt, change, and to make decisions are bigger barriers than the simple lack of talent and depth on this team.

Is management still in a post turkey tryptophan slumber? Time to wake up and get busy!

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#4 Bud Poile
January 11 2017, 12:49PM
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@Bro Horvat

"Another Hamhuis/Vrbata debacle is would be absolutely crushing."

Like when not even one team made an offer for Vrbata and Hamhuis refused to go to Chicago while Nill played JB?

Some of you guys have a disconnect between reality and fantasy.

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#5 Dirk22
January 11 2017, 09:40AM
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Of course you deal - unfortunately Jimbo has yet to do that at the two deadlines he's been at the helm.

Vrbata, Matthias, Hamhuis, Weber, Richardson etc. All on expiring contracts - not one asset to show for it. Not even a 7th rounder.

Absurd for a team that's supposed to be rebuilding.

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#6 Bud Poile
January 11 2017, 01:08PM
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@Bro Horvat

"...they buried Vrbata in the lineup pre-deadline and thus destroyed his trade value."

You're in contention for a CA award for that rich bit of theatre.

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#7 Bud Poile
January 11 2017, 02:33PM
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@Dirk22

Dude,give it up.

Follow this team or follow another team but pay closer attention because you're wasting my time.

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#8 Bud Poile
January 11 2017, 01:33PM
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@Forever 1915

It's a rebuilding team above .500 that just had the longest winning streak in the NHL when Tanev went down again.

Whine me a river,like Forever and ever.

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#9 Bud Poile
January 11 2017, 01:55PM
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@TheRealRusty

Remember Gillis after Wilson got hosed nobody traded with him unless they were dumping their garbage or fleecing him.

Everybody is willing to talk to Benning because like you,they conceive he is a hick.

Meanwhile,the Baertschi,Granlund,Sutter,Bieksa,Kesler,Lack,Dorsett and Garrison trades suggest he is active, fair and competent.

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#10 JuiceBox
January 11 2017, 09:54AM
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Vancouver will likely have the same problem it did last year; the players they have on expiring contracts aren't likely worth much on the trade market. Horvat, Guance, Rodin, Gudbranson, and Tryamkin aren't going anywhere. Larsen, Skille, Megna, Chaput, and Boucher have no value to a team looking to contend. The only players that Vancouver has on an expiring contracts and that are worth anything on a contending team are Burrows and Miller and if the last couple years has shown us anything is that those guys will not fetch Vancouver more than a few mid-round picks.

Looking at players under contract Edler, Tanev, Sbisa, and Hansen are the guys that have some value for a contending team. Hansens recent injuries have likely damaged his trade value, JB has said he wont move anybody with a NTC/NMC so Edlers out, that leaves Tanev and Sbisa. Of those two Tanev is the only one worth anything substantial. The problem with trading him is who replaces him? He plays a large roll on this team, it hurts when he is not in the line-up.

Tanev, Hansen, Sbisa, Burrows, and Miller. That's all the trade bait Vancouver can muster.

This is a very contentious issue with the fan base. Personally, I put winning above all else. By selling the farm and gutting the team of anybody of value its basically throwing in the towel and giving up. Management saying they would prefer it if the team were losing instead. Is that the kind of attitude that we want? Is that the kind of message they want to send to their players? Winning begets winning, losing begets losing. I would rather see this team stay together and push as hard as they possibly can for a playoff spot than see them resign themselves to losing for the sake of landing a higher draft pick.

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#11 Bro Horvat
January 11 2017, 12:57PM
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Bud Poile wrote:

"Another Hamhuis/Vrbata debacle is would be absolutely crushing."

Like when not even one team made an offer for Vrbata and Hamhuis refused to go to Chicago while Nill played JB?

Some of you guys have a disconnect between reality and fantasy.

No, like when ownership/management didn't take the first Dallas offer and attempted to fleece them rather than accept a more-than-fair deal. And like when they didn't take the last-minute Dallas offer of a 3rd to at least salvage some value. And when they buried Vrbata in the lineup pre-deadline and thus destroyed his trade value.

But everything's right on track in your "reality", right??

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#12 Bud Poile
January 11 2017, 12:56PM
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TheRealRusty wrote:

The opportunity cost of not dealing your vets (Guddy and Hansen), is not just the picks you forgo when they walk away for nothing. It is also which asset you lose during the expansion draft (most likely one of our younger forwards in the case of Hansen).

At this point in time Sbisa has rather surprised me, and started to perform at a decent value relative to his contract. I would rather see us try to keep him and unload Guddy before his gets a chance to negotiate his white elephant of a contract.

Hansen is a valuable member of the team, but is close to his peak performance. As much as I hate the thought of the honey badger leaving, his relative trade value will be as high as it is going to be right now (injury aside). Trading him will allow us to protect another one of our younger forward, who stands a higher chance of being a key member of our team in 3-4 years time. Teams such as the Hawks are good at maximizing return on their veteran assets, thus allowing them to regenerate and contend yearly. Canucks mgt would be wise to pay attention.

The problem is there is only a handful of true contenders while the other 24 teams have a Burrows,Hansen or Guddy they want to trade off in this expansion year.

My prediction is there will be few trades of value as the true contenders have dozens of teams trying to trade a Burrows,Guddy and Hansen.

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#13 Bud Poile
January 11 2017, 01:30PM
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@Bro Horvat

Dan has a full NTC and steadfastly stated his wish to remain in Vancouver.

Note the difference between Hamhuis refusing to leave Vancouver and Garrison waiving/leaving without so much as a whimper.

Dan refused to leave,as is his wish. By the time he and his family accepted Nill had Russell.

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#14 Dirk22
January 11 2017, 11:50AM
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@JuiceBox

"The only players that Vancouver has on an expiring contracts and that are worth anything on a contending team are Burrows and Miller and if the last couple years has shown us anything is that those guys will not fetch Vancouver more than a few mid-round picks."

I'm sorry what? The Canucks haven't traded an expiring contract so how do you know what the market is? And a few mid-round picks is good, no? Canucks are missing their 5th and 6th round picks this year - and they're REBUILDING!!!

Leafs got a 4th and a point per game AHL 22 year old for Matthias a year after the Canucks let him walk for nothing. Would something like that not be helpful?

"Winning begets winning" - give me a break. Good players beget winning. Case in point- the Blackhawks were awful. They got good players - Kane, Toews etc. Then they were good. It's not complicated.

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#15 Freud
January 11 2017, 12:10PM
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If Demko, Juolevi and Boeser fulfill their potential.

If Vancouver's younger defence fulfills their potential.

If everything goes right.. if...Vancouver will look a lot like Nashville of the past few years.

Strong goaltending and defence, but lacking the game breakers at forward.

If you continue with teams like that, you'll get Nashville type results. Playoffs every year, maybe a round one win here or there, but never a real threat to make a final. Your reward is then a pick in the high teen or 20s and you get forwards like Auston Watson.

Vancouver needs one or two high skilled forwards to begin a real push to win a cup. They won't get that finishing 9th or 10th and getting the 15th pick.

I need to see a Cup win before I die. My concern is this so called rebuild is not a Cup winning rebuild, but rather a top 10 teams rebuild.

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#16 Dirk22
January 11 2017, 02:19PM
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Bud Poile wrote:

"Another Hamhuis/Vrbata debacle is would be absolutely crushing."

Like when not even one team made an offer for Vrbata and Hamhuis refused to go to Chicago while Nill played JB?

Some of you guys have a disconnect between reality and fantasy.

If, at the trade deadline, you can't trade a player coming off a 31 goal season and a d-man who was on the most recent Team Canada Olympic team then you shouldn't be a GM.

Even, for a playoff bubble team (which they were not) that would be inexcusable. Stop making excuses for him. Players with no-trades get traded all the time. Benning should have been spending the full year putting together these deals.

Also, maybe see if you can expand your arguments for Benning beyond "stop whining".

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#17 Bud Poile
January 11 2017, 04:32PM
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@TheRealPB

The team had a plethora of injuries so they spread the scoring out amongst the lines.Vrbata's season last year is somewhat similar to this season with the Eriksson situation.

Vrbata's wife was late in her pregnancy in Vancouver,coupled with his Limited NTC and a very lacklustre performance over the season,resulting in no offers:

Vrbata, meanwhile, gave the Canucks a list of eight teams he would agree to be traded to, but Benning said there were no offers for the 34-year-old winger who has 12 goals and 12 assists in 57 games this season.

“He gave us a fair list,” said Benning. “If we could have done something, we would have done it.”

http://globalnews.ca/news/2548898/we-tried-hard-canucks-fail-to-move-hamhuis-vrbata-at-deadline/

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#18 Goon
January 11 2017, 11:39AM
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Given that Benning has repeatedly overpaid for marginal talent, all I can really hope for is that the Canucks stand pat at the deadline. They might squeak into the playoffs but there's no way they make a serious run - if Miller or Markstrom gets hot, they *might* fluke their way into the second round, but that's it. More than likely they'll end up in 9th or 10th place.

What veterans could they really trade, anyway? Burrows and Hansen are the only players who seem movable. Maybe you get a third for Burrows or a second for Hansen, but I don't see Benning making these moves, given his track record and the fact that the team will likely still be in the playoff hunt come the deadline.

Just don't mess up and buy, Jim, please. Your team isn't good enough to justify it.

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#19 Forever 1915
January 11 2017, 01:19PM
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Dirk22 wrote:

Of course you deal - unfortunately Jimbo has yet to do that at the two deadlines he's been at the helm.

Vrbata, Matthias, Hamhuis, Weber, Richardson etc. All on expiring contracts - not one asset to show for it. Not even a 7th rounder.

Absurd for a team that's supposed to be rebuilding.

"Absurd for a team that's supposed to be *intentionally tanking*."

There, I wrote what you really meant.

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#20 apr
January 11 2017, 10:07AM
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You have to look at it from other team's end. If you are a playoff team aspiring for a Cup, what would you want from the Canucks line-up given your cap situation and the upcoming expansion draft?

Would Dallas or LA really want to give up a 1st or 2nd rounder for Miller? Would the Canucks eat Lehtonen/Niemi contract for a year?

If you are Montreal, would you really give up a 2nd or 3rd rounder for Burrows when your team is getting healthy and you want McCarron and Scherbek in the line-up?

Do you really give up a first rounder for Hansen if your Pittsburgh? As no way JB will settle for anything but a first rounder given the twins have another year?

Bo is taking off with Burrows on his line. Is it not worth keeping Burrows to help Bo continue to develop? The kid could be a 70 point player with the proper development. Isn't forsaking a 4th rounder (or whatever you can get for Burrows) worth it?

Unless some idiot GM wants to give up a Forsberg or Hall for a plug, yah trade a veteran. But really, what do the Canucks have to offer that other teams really want and are willing to let go. Not much I reckon.

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#21 Bro Horvat
January 11 2017, 10:58AM
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You absolutely deal the vets if you can get any kind of decent value for them.

That doesn't necessarily mean you don't aim for the playoffs too. You aim for the playoffs while relying more on players that actually have a chance of being part of the future. Does that drop your odds a bit in the next couple of years? Maybe so, but that's not the point.

Keeping Burr, Hansen and Miller (and possibly Edler) throughout the duration of their contracts to make a "run" right now is ridiculous. You try to get the best deal you can for them and bank it. Give every young player you've got a real chance to grow and become a part of the future nucleus. Give Rodin ice time with legit linemates. Throw Boucher in there and at least see if he's got anything. Roll with Marky until Demko is ready.

Another Hamhuis/Vrbata debacle is would be absolutely crushing.

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#22 Forever 1915
January 11 2017, 01:24PM
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Bud Poile wrote:

"Another Hamhuis/Vrbata debacle is would be absolutely crushing."

Like when not even one team made an offer for Vrbata and Hamhuis refused to go to Chicago while Nill played JB?

Some of you guys have a disconnect between reality and fantasy.

"Some of you guys have a disconnect between reality and fantasy."

Says the guy who says "everything is ok because two years ago we had a 101 point season!"

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#23 Dirk22
January 11 2017, 02:42PM
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@JuiceBox

Burrows has been good for Horvat's development but the trade deadline is at the end of February, so we're talking about giving him up for only 6 weeks or so. If you really want him back, sign him again in July. If you're not going to re-sign him then we're talking about 20 or so games...I don't think Horvat's going to crumble without him around.

Are you suggesting that if the Canucks had traded Hamhuis and Vrbata last year then that would have had a negative effect on the Canucks future - like that would have left a mark on Horvat, Baertschi, Hutton that they'd never be able to overcome. I'm sorry, I don't buy that at all.

"A losing attitude is cancer" - they finished third last in the NHL last year - but they did that with a "winning attitude" I suppose?

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#24 Fred-65
January 11 2017, 03:14PM
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Burnabybob wrote:

Rebuild. Rebuild. Rebuild. Anyone over 30 who doesn't have a no-trade clause should be considered possible trade bait. I would honestly even consider moving Chris Tanev. He's a good player, but the Canucks have an abundance of defensive defensemen, and he's the kind of player who could fetch a decent return, like a young forward or a high draft pick. Tanev is no spring chicken either - he's 27 and will probably be past his prime when the Canucks are seriously ready to compete again in 2-3 years.

I don't know how many of you lets tank tank tank brigade, and replace with youngster who have a chance I repeat chance ( 1st round players 60% chance and those in later rounds 20% chance ) and God knows our high picks are not exactly proof of great things to come .... Virtanen, McCann and Juolevi ( certainly not a Thomas Chabot clone ) are fans who actually plonk down thousands each year for tickets hoping for an entertaining evening out. Right, not many ! I don't wish to plonk down NHL money for an AHL/Junior product. You keep that up and you might have to travel to another city to watch the Canucks in the future. I'd guess they're drawing crowds of maybe 15,000 and that's not good enough. I suspect less fans next season.

It's management job to ice the best team they can NOW. Every game should be played to win not prepare for some distant future moment

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#25 Jabs
January 11 2017, 10:05AM
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See if there is a viable offer for the vets on expiring contracts. I agree with the principle that GMJB has of not giving away players for the sake of giving them away but this team does need more picks and more depth for the farm in the upcoming years.

One other thing.....please please do not be buyers at the trade deadline. We do not need more Weinrich's or Carney's. If this team somehow makes the playoffs then do it with the players already in the system.

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#26 TheRealRusty
January 11 2017, 01:10PM
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Bud Poile wrote:

It's called a NTC.

Hamhuis refused to waive to Chicago and by the time his family made the decision to accept to go to Dallas they already secured Russell.

Back to fantasy land.

Not sure what argument you are trying to make... If the Canucks mgt weren't going to ask him to waive his no trade, then fair enough I can respect that. But that they were willing to ask him, begs the question why they didn't do so much earlier than they did? Seems the likely answer is either they had a change in mind (mostly likely scenario to me) or they thought that they could wait last minute and leverage the market. Either answer is unacceptable imho, as it reeks of either of indecision or unpreparedness/incompetence.

As much as I am a critic of GMJBTL, props to JB for his drafting acumen (his only saving grace IMHO). Can you imagine how more far along our "non rebuilt retool" would be with two extra second rounders and two extra third rounders? Conservatively that is what we should have netted over the last 3 years for Hamhius, Verbata (if he was put in a scoring position to be showcased), S. Mathias etc.

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#27 Bro Horvat
January 11 2017, 01:15PM
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@Bud Poile

I'm sure his family waited until deadline day before they had even considered the possibility of going to Dallas. And if management waited until the last possible second to even present the idea, then they screwed up worse than first imagined.

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#28 TheRealRusty
January 11 2017, 01:36PM
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Bud Poile wrote:

The problem is there is only a handful of true contenders while the other 24 teams have a Burrows,Hansen or Guddy they want to trade off in this expansion year.

My prediction is there will be few trades of value as the true contenders have dozens of teams trying to trade a Burrows,Guddy and Hansen.

There in lies my problem with the GMJBTL combo. They are too passive (too nice guy). I want my GM to be a shark, a predator, a cutthroat. Someone who can outwit the other GMs by propping up demand for our players and who will improve the team at all costs.

IMHO GMJB is best suited to be a head scout or a VP of scouting (of whatever made up position they call it nowadays). He is too nice a guy and too straight a shooter to be a successful NHL GM. His honesty and straightforwardness is refreshing but often to his own detriment by painting himself into corners.

I totally agreed that most teams will be in an holding pattern this year due to the expansion draft, but this is where an experienced GM is at his most valuable. Leveraging his connections to drum up demand instead of passively waiting for the market to change.

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#29 Jamie E
January 11 2017, 01:55PM
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A few thoughts:

1) If you are hoping for strong returns for veteran players at the deadline, this is the wrong year. With expansion looming I expect this to be the quietest trade deadline in years. I expect most trade activity will be post-season, just prior to the expansion draft. Sure a few teams will add a few expiring contracts, but people fantasizing about liquidating the entire roster for a ground up rebuild THIS YEAR are dreaming in technicolour.

2) Who cares what happened last year? Water under the bridge. Re-litigating past trade deadlines is a waste of time.

3) I expect the Canucks will miss the playoffs. The injury bug is starting to bite and I expect a couple of underachievers like Dallas and Los Angeles to find another gear in the 2nd half.

4) Tanking is no guarantee of a top three draft pick and there are TONS of examples of first line talents taken outside the top ten. I personally cannot countenance a plan to win by losing.

5) Play to win, let the chips fall where they may, and draft the best player available wherever that is.

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#30 Bud Poile
January 11 2017, 04:41PM
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@Dirk22

Dirk,the Montreal Canadiens are not going to offer a second for Burrows,so how's about we keep him as he is doing excellent mentoring while still adding production.

Only 30% of third-rounders even make it to the NHL,fourth-rounders a 20% chance.

I see you're still hammering on about Hamhuis and Vrbata as if you had a clue.

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#31 Cal Buttercluck
January 11 2017, 06:38PM
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trade Megna for Vey

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#32 Dirk22
January 11 2017, 10:00PM
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@Forever 1915

Are these the same excuses that are going to be used when Miller and Burrows are still around after the deadline? "It's not as simple as it seems" - these people are paid millions of dollars to put together hockey teams - stop with the excuses.

It was a colossal failure last year at the deadline. Everybody in hockey knows it yet we still have Benning apologists claiming it was 'too hard.'

Eric Staal - captain of the Hurricanes - Won a Stanley Cup with them - Full no trade clause - Traded. Andrew Ladd - captain of Jets - Modified no trade clause - Traded. And we can't part with anybody?

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#33 Whackanuck
January 11 2017, 11:24AM
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The problem with trading a viable NHLer for, at best, a mid round pick is that the team has to replace that player by hopefully at least an equivalent. If that is possible through free agency, then do it. Miller and Burrows are old and on expiring contracts so I guess trading them is a good idea but mid-round picks are such a crapshoot.

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#34 JuiceBox
January 11 2017, 12:20PM
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@Dirk22

Alright, I'll bite.

It's likely the Canucks could get a 3rd round pick or a 4th plus an AHLer for Burrows - siting Matthias as an example. I appreciate the view that more picks is always necessary but have you thought about what Burrows has done for Horvat's development? Before Burrows found himself on that line, Horvat was struggling and it wasn't pretty. Burrows has been key in Horvats development and it's no secret that Horvat still struggles against better competition; imagine where Horvat would be without Burrows? Is it worth subtracting Burrows from that line for the sake of a 3rd or a 4th round pick? On paper it's easy to make that call but you have to look at the human side. To me, the positive impact Burrows has had on Horvat outweighs the 24% and 15% chance a 3rd or 4th round pick even makes it to 100 games or the 6% and 3% chance a 3rd or 4th round pick becomes a top 6 forward or top 4 defenceman.

I think the best opportunity for Vancouver to recover a mid-round pick or two is through Luca Sbisa. He is playing much better of late, he could definitely help a contending team as a depth defenceman, he has met his game requirement to be exposed in the expansion draft and I don't think Vancouver would miss him all that much. If they were open to retaining part of his salary there are possibilities there.

For every Blackhawks & Penguins there is an Oilers & Avalanche. All those teams were awful, they all received great players in the draft.. What separates the good teams from the bad (or even the great teams from the good teams) is the attitude. A losing attitude is a cancer. Management, by throwing in the towel and gutting the team, are saying "it's OK to lose and be terrible" as a fan I am not OK with that. It's disrespectful to the league, the players, and the fans, it's garbage.

You and I have been round and round on this time and time again. It's clear we are on exact opposite sides of the fence. I do see your side and I respect your opinion, I just do not agree with it. So I guess we just have to agree to disagree on the direction this team should go.

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#35 TrueBlue
January 11 2017, 12:23PM
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I'm all for 'trading the vets', but I don't think I could even wrap my mind around what it would take for this mgmt group to even consider being sellers at the deadline let alone a veteran fire sale.

It won't happen, but getting a return for Hansen should be priority one. Exposing Granlund or Baertschi (and who knows how Rodin will play out once he's in the lineup?) in the expansion draft should not be an option for this team if they care at all about asset management, maximizing value, and building for the future.

Hansen nets you something, and in addition we lose one fewer asset. Should be simple math, but I'm not holding my breath.

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#36 Dirk22
January 11 2017, 02:29PM
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@TheRealRusty

don't forget the two 2nd rounders thrown into the Sutter and Gudbranson trades.

"Here take these - we got Gaudette and Zhukenov coming up. We're good."

One second round pick in three drafts.

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#37 Forever 1915
January 11 2017, 04:52PM
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Dirk22 wrote:

Gaining back assets for expiring contracts is a no-brainer move for a 'rebuilding team.'

Tanking may be a by-product of losing those players but it is the assets you gain back that are more important. Canucks didn't need any help with tanking last year.

Ok, let's break down the last two years based on the players that you referenced:

2014-2015: Benning retained Matthias, Richardson and Weber. DON'T YOU UNDERSTAND THAT THIS WAS A 101 POINT SEASON!!!! BUD POILE BUD POILE BUD POILE!!! TELL DIRK22 HOW WRONG HE IS!!!

In all seriousness, the Canucks had a legit shot at making a run in the playoffs that year. Benning retained a kick-ass fourth liner (Richardson) and two guys who were riding fluke career-high seasons in goal scoring (Matthias and Weber). He rolled the dice, kept all of his assets and lost out. These guys are depth, they would have obtained mediocre returns anyways.

What Benning *should* have done, IMHO, was to flip Vrbata when he was red-hot because he could have easily have gotten a 1st round pick plus an A prospect, plus dumped $5M in salary - a great return for a no-cost UFA signing. To put it another way, could you buy a 1st round pick for $3.5M dollars? Didn't think so. Dubnyk for a 3rd rounder, eat your heart out. But that didn't happen.

2015-2016: Vrbata and Hamhuis had virtually no trade value. Vrbata had no trade value because he had no on-ice performance. I blame Desjardins, he mismanaged Vrbata. For example, once the opposition figured out how to neutralize Vrbata as the shooter on the PP, Desjardins should have developed a new strategy. But, as I argue time and time again, Desjardins doesn't actually know any offensive strategy, the PP suffered and Vrbata was toast.

Hamhuis, yes, they mishandled him but we now know through the benefit of hindsight that there was only one real buyer, Dallas. We all know the ownership history with Dallas and Benning had said before, I'm not going to make a bad trade. In that respect, he was sending a message that he wasn't going to be a trade patsy (a statement that I humbly argue against).

Hell, I mean, what would you have given for Vrbata last year, honestly? He was playing like crap and cost $5M, not even worth a 7th rounder given the cap hit. I'm surprised that Hamhuis wasn't a hotter commodity, I mean, how many teams are screaming for a Top 4 D-man now? I don't get it, Hamhuis is still a good mid-pairing defenceman (though injury-prone and soft). I can't explain the lack of demand for him.

Getting back to your post, when you contextualize your statement "Gaining back assets for expiring contracts is a no-brainer move for a 'rebuilding team.'", you can see it's not as simple as it seems.

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#38 LTFan
January 11 2017, 05:32PM
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"So, this week's question is, do you deal vets for picks and prospects at the deadline, or hold on to your guys in hopes of making a prolonged postseason push, even if that means losing a good player for nothing?"

I have broken down your question into 2 parts. No you do not deal vets for picks and prospects. Reason - you are not going to get value for your vets. Remember all the teams in the league have vets they would also like to move if they can get value in return. Very difficult to do.

Part 2. If the players are any good then hang onto them. Give them an extension. If not any good you don't lose anything. Playoffs - this is what every team wants - to make the playoffs. How far a team goes depend on how healthy your team is and - some luck breaks.

You need to show loyalty to your players as long as they are giving their best every game and are not hurting the team with mistakes.

I would rarely trade a player who has been in the League for a number of years and still has 2, 3 or 4 years of productivity left. The Cap hit would also come into play here. Prospects, aka draft picks may or may not work out.

While many on this site want to trade players - you need someone to trade with - and not get fleeced. This debate will go on forever, on CA and on every similar site in the NHL.

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#39 Steampuck
January 11 2017, 10:46AM
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Curiously, I'm looking at easing pressure re. the expansion draft. If you can get a decent return for Gudbranson, Sbisa, or Hansen, I say you jump. You protect the remainder. I'd like to protect both Baertschi and Granlund, which may mean moving or exposing Hansen.

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#40 Steampuck
January 11 2017, 10:47AM
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Also: a run "so to speak"??

Why did a six-game winning streak need to be qualified? Unless you get paid by the word.

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#41 TheRealPB
January 11 2017, 12:13PM
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I would look to move the players that actually have some value and you actually can. That leaves Edler out since he's stated clearly on multiple occasions that he doesn't want to go and we see what a disaster we are when he's out of the lineup. I also think we'd be getting rid of Hansen when his value is pretty low given all the injuries. I wouldn't be surprised to get something for Sbisa who's had his best run here for a while. I also think that Miller's play -- the best in his three years here -- and low actual money for the rest of the year means that he'd definitely be of interest to a contender as insurance if nothing else. Burrows too would generate interest but of all the vets he seems to have the most impact on the younger players.

The bungling of last year's trade deadline is probably my biggest beef with the management here as anything would have been better than zero games and zero impact from Hamhuis and Vrbata after the deadline (combined with their mishandling of both in the games leading up to it). So I have low expectations this year. I don't believe that tanking intentionally is a viable strategy but I certainly think being realistic about what we are and what we need is. If you can get mid-level picks for Hansen, Sbisa and something slightly higher for Miller or Burrows you absolutely go for it. The only thing I don't want to see is a delusion that we are actually a competitive playoff team and jettisoning picks or prospects for a vet. This upcoming schedule should put us back into a more realistic position and not have the management harbor such fantasies hopefully.

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#42 TheRealRusty
January 11 2017, 12:36PM
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apr wrote:

You have to look at it from other team's end. If you are a playoff team aspiring for a Cup, what would you want from the Canucks line-up given your cap situation and the upcoming expansion draft?

Would Dallas or LA really want to give up a 1st or 2nd rounder for Miller? Would the Canucks eat Lehtonen/Niemi contract for a year?

If you are Montreal, would you really give up a 2nd or 3rd rounder for Burrows when your team is getting healthy and you want McCarron and Scherbek in the line-up?

Do you really give up a first rounder for Hansen if your Pittsburgh? As no way JB will settle for anything but a first rounder given the twins have another year?

Bo is taking off with Burrows on his line. Is it not worth keeping Burrows to help Bo continue to develop? The kid could be a 70 point player with the proper development. Isn't forsaking a 4th rounder (or whatever you can get for Burrows) worth it?

Unless some idiot GM wants to give up a Forsberg or Hall for a plug, yah trade a veteran. But really, what do the Canucks have to offer that other teams really want and are willing to let go. Not much I reckon.

The opportunity cost of not dealing your vets (Guddy and Hansen), is not just the picks you forgo when they walk away for nothing. It is also which asset you lose during the expansion draft (most likely one of our younger forwards in the case of Hansen).

At this point in time Sbisa has rather surprised me, and started to perform at a decent value relative to his contract. I would rather see us try to keep him and unload Guddy before his gets a chance to negotiate his white elephant of a contract.

Hansen is a valuable member of the team, but is close to his peak performance. As much as I hate the thought of the honey badger leaving, his relative trade value will be as high as it is going to be right now (injury aside). Trading him will allow us to protect another one of our younger forward, who stands a higher chance of being a key member of our team in 3-4 years time. Teams such as the Hawks are good at maximizing return on their veteran assets, thus allowing them to regenerate and contend yearly. Canucks mgt would be wise to pay attention.

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#43 Dirk22
January 11 2017, 02:25PM
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Forever 1915 wrote:

"Absurd for a team that's supposed to be *intentionally tanking*."

There, I wrote what you really meant.

Gaining back assets for expiring contracts is a no-brainer move for a 'rebuilding team.'

Tanking may be a by-product of losing those players but it is the assets you gain back that are more important. Canucks didn't need any help with tanking last year.

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#44 TheRealPB
January 11 2017, 02:37PM
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@Bud Poile

You are misremembering. The Canucks did themselves no favors by moving Vrbata up and down the lineup and off of the Sedin line and depressed his value. Then he got injured and was not sale-worthy at the deadline. Hamhuis had accepted a trade for the good of the team. He was as shocked as anyone that it didn't happen. Given where he ended up the Canucks looked particularly bad after that fiasco.

There are many points on which I agree with you but you are wrong about the debacle at the deadline last year.

We are of course forgetting some of the other moves that were roundly criticized, namely the Shinkaruk-Granlund trade. But as you and others have said I find it hard to believe there will be a robust deadline of deals given the upcoming expansion draft and general parity across the league.

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#45 apr
January 11 2017, 03:20PM
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Dirk22 wrote:

don't forget the two 2nd rounders thrown into the Sutter and Gudbranson trades.

"Here take these - we got Gaudette and Zhukenov coming up. We're good."

One second round pick in three drafts.

We're getting two second rounders this year, as Columbus will finish top 5 and its a weaker draft year.

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#46 andyg
January 11 2017, 03:53PM
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For all of the "crushing and so disappointing" deals that Benning has or should I say has not done he has still found a few very solid young players for minimal. Baer and Granlund are both playing well. The Canucks are looking like a team that will continue to challenge for a playoff spot. I would say that it is very impressive, especially because it is the youth leading the way and not the twins. Players like Juolevi , Boeser , Virtanen , Guadette and Lockwood all have potential to fill important roles for the future. Now is the time to just use your draft picks and quietly build this club from with in.

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#47 Donald's Hat Trick
January 11 2017, 04:10PM
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Fyi, Bo's an All-Star, he don't need no mentoring from Burrows!

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#48 Dirty30
January 11 2017, 07:59PM
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Hamius shouldn't have been surprised because he said that if he was traded he would be willing to resign with Van at the end of the season. That basically told teams he was just going to be a rental. And Van said nothing to dissuade that statement.

So no great surprise that no one bit on that deal.

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#49 defenceman factory
January 11 2017, 08:07PM
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The priority for this team this year should not be a playoff push.

The one move I think the Canucks must make is to deal Gudbranson. If he is here next year I expect it will be on a very expensive contract. JD Burke will be sent into convulsions so severe he may not recover. The return on Guddy should be substantial assuming a strong recovery from his injury. This also allows the team to protect Sbisa and expose Biega.

The lack of progress from Virtanen and not knowing if Rodin or Boucher could fill a regular roster spot make it difficult to know if trading Hansen now is a good move. Those guys need some ice time so a good decision can be made. If either one looks like a solid middle 6 winger trade Hansen.

If there are inquiries on Miller or Burrows and they want a shot with a contender get some more picks. Miller isn't here next year without a major overpay. Burrows will re-sign at good value.

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#50 TheRealRusty
January 11 2017, 11:24PM
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Dirk22 wrote:

Are these the same excuses that are going to be used when Miller and Burrows are still around after the deadline? "It's not as simple as it seems" - these people are paid millions of dollars to put together hockey teams - stop with the excuses.

It was a colossal failure last year at the deadline. Everybody in hockey knows it yet we still have Benning apologists claiming it was 'too hard.'

Eric Staal - captain of the Hurricanes - Won a Stanley Cup with them - Full no trade clause - Traded. Andrew Ladd - captain of Jets - Modified no trade clause - Traded. And we can't part with anybody?

I would suggest that they shouldn't have waited till the trade deadline to try, but immediately once the decision had been made that Hamhius wasn't going to be re-sign. I would have expected an aggressive GM to be phoning teams every time a LH defenceman gets injured during the 2015-2016 season.

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