July 19 2012 10:01AM
The Canucks have placed a focus on size and strength at the draft and on the trade front in recent years. The shift in philosophy is perhaps no better reflected than in the team’s three best young forwards – Zack Kassian, Nicklas Jensen, and Brendan Gaunce. Coincidentally (or maybe not), the trio all play different positions as well.
Read on past the jump to find out whether Vancouver could be icing their own version of the famous Legion of Doom line in a few years.
July 12 2012 09:46AM
Kevin Connauton (left) protects the puck during a practice session.
Kevin Connauton is arguably the top defensive prospect in Vancouver’s system. He was profiled back in January, and at the time he was halfway into a very solid season with the Chicago Wolves. His defensive partner, Chris Tanev, had just been recalled to the Canucks. Connauton continued his solid play without Tanev, as the Wolves qualified for the AHL postseason.
July 05 2012 10:01AM
When it became obvious that the Canucks weren’t willing to give Sami Salo a contract longer than one year, he did what any logical human being would and accepted Tampa Bay’s more generous two-year, $7.5 million contract offer.
Sami was a warrior during his tenure with the Canucks. The word warrior gets tossed around too much in pro sports, but we are talking about a guy whose injury history reads like that of a professional stuntman. Salo’s testicular region was on the receiving end of a 100 mile-per-hour slap shot from Duncan Keith, and it didn’t even cause him to miss a game. He has torn muscles, cracked bones, dislocated limbs, suffered concussions, and been bitten by snakes (well only one snake, but I’m sure if you dig deep enough you will find another snake bite incident in his life, in addition to the metaphorical one).
Salo leaves the Canucks as one of the best defensemen in the history of the organization. Even with the immense number of games he has missed, he still ranks statistically among the best the organization has ever seen:
- 5th in points with 236
- 3rd in goals with 74
- 1st in game-winning goals with 20
- 3rd in shots on goal with 1078 (I’d wager 1070 of them of the slap shot variety)
- 1st in power play goals with 48
- 1st in postseason games played with 74
- 1st (tied) in postseason goals with 9
- 1st in awkward goal celebrations
Salo’s tenure in Vancouver was filled with many memorable goals and highlights. Let’s count down 10 of the best after the jump.
July 01 2012 02:01PM
According to the NHL Network, by way of Erin Brown (aka @Rinkside), a credentialed reporter who covers the Florida Panthers, the Canucks were priced out of the Jason Garrison sweepstakes. Not a huge shocker, as Garrison is looking to cash in on an impressive offensive season (16 goals, third among all NHL defensemen in 2011-12 behind only Shea Weber and Erik Karlsson). The crazy part is that they were priced out at a ridiculous $6.5 million.
Read past the jump for more!
July 01 2012 11:56AM
The Northwest Division is beefing up. The Avalanche have apparently signed forward/defenseman/goon Matt Carkner (Update: Matt Carnker will in fact sign in the Eastern Conference with the New York Islander) and the Wild have signed faceoff specialist/goon Zenon Konopka. The West is beefing up as a whole too, as the Sharks gave 4 years and nearly 8 million to Adam Burish...
Konopka agrees to 2 year contract with Minnesota Wild.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) July 1, 2012
Do the Canucks need to react to these moves? Should they? Popular opinion seems to indicate they should, as Vancouver’s current toughness consists of Dale Weise, Max Lapierre, Zack Kassian, and Kevin Bieksa.