February 27 2017 11:00AM
As it so happens, I sent out my request for Monday Mailbag questions yesterday and almost every single one was about how badly this year's trade deadline can go. I figured you would get bored of my answering that same question worded many different ways, so I sent out a request for different questions. Wherein there's a problem is I've never fielded more questions in my life. What I'm trying to say is: don't expect terribly long answers in this week's mailbag, as I'm trying to get to everyone and make sure I do due diligence.
February 27 2017 12:10AM
The Los Angeles Kings weren't the only team to make a blockbuster trade out of the Western Conference Sunday. Just moments after the Kings acquired Ben Bishop from the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Minnesota Wild announced that they'd acquired Martin Hanzal from the Arizona Coyotes.
The trade is official.— NHLNumbers (@NHLnumbers) February 27, 2017
To Wild: Martin Hanzal, Ryan White
To Coyotes: 2017 first, 2018 second, 2019 conditional pick
That trade should be of interest for Canucks fans because the Wild are one of the first two teams connected in earnest to Jannik Hansen. If they're 'all in' and I tend to think today's move is an indication of as much, how far are they willing to go down that path, and is there still ample room to stumble on Hansen as they do?
My understanding is there is Jannik Hansen trade interest in Minnesota and Anaheim. Not sure if those teams are on his trade list. #Canucks— Matthew Sekeres (@mattsekeres) February 23, 2017
February 26 2017 05:39PM
Photo Credit: Kim Klement - USA TODAY Sports
An already short list of destinations for the Vancouver Canucks netminder Ryan Miller shrank by one team today, as the Los Angeles Kings went to the Tampa Bay Lightning and acquired Ben Bishop to shore up their crease for what they hope is an extended playoff run.
Per TSN's Bob McKenzie, the Kings surrendered Erik Cernak, Peter Budaj, a fifth-round pick in 2017 and a conditional selection in 2017. ESPN's Pierre LeBrun is reporting that, as part of the deal, Tampa Bay retained 20% of Bishop's salary.
That ends any speculation concerning the Kings as a landing spot for Miller. There's a lot to unpack here, so let's dive right in.
February 26 2017 03:35PM
Photo Credit: Russell LaBounty - USA TODAY Sports
At the end of last season, the Vancouver Canucks struggled with whether to buy out Alexandre Burrows or keep him for the final year of his contract. Now he's among their most desirable and tradeable assets in advance of the March 1st deadline. How quickly things chance.
Playing in the Canucks middle six as a compliment to Bo Horvat and Sven Baertschi for much of the season, Burrows is enjoying a renaissance year. Burrows' nine goals and eleven assists have him two points off from last season's 22 points with games in hand.
He might not be the Burrows of old, but if nothing else, he's proven he can contribute from a team's bottom six until, at least, the conclusion of this season and his contract. The market for players of that ilk can prove insatiable at this time of year, though, and that's why he could very well find himself calling a new city home for the first time in his eleven-year career.
Ultimately, Burrows will decide where he does or doesn't go. He has full no-trade protection in his contract. Every indication to date though is that Burrows is willing to work with the team.
February 25 2017 11:09PM
Photo Credit: Anne-Marie Sorvin - USA TODAY Sports
Tonight wasn't looking good for the Vancouver Canucks from the start. They'd lost a half of their team to the mumps over the bye week, faced a Western Conference powerhouse in the San Jose Sharks and, well, they were coming off the bye week. That's a new kind of scheduled loss.
And I don't think anyone -- perhaps even the Canucks -- saw this game going any differently. Given the effort they showcased tonight, that's okay though. Expectations were at an all-time low. All the Canucks had to do was put up something of a fight, and one could count tonight among the multitude moral victories Vancouver's hung their hat on in these last two seasons.
The 4-1 score in San Jose's favour might not tell the story of a handful of plucky underdogs banding together, but for most of the night, it was a relatively close game. Hell, the Canucks outshot the Sharks handily, and whether one can attribute most of that score effects or otherwise, it's worth noting all the same.
With three call-ups in their lineup and one defenceman playing in his first NHL hockey game in Evan McEneny, the Canucks fared admirably, I thought.
Daniel Sedin scored the Canucks' lone goal and Ryan Miller stopped 22 of 26 shots. Martin Jones stopped 35 of the Canucks 36 shots and Mikkel Boedker led the way offensively for the Sharks with one goal and five shots.