June 27 2014 06:08PM
With the 6th overall selection, the Vancouver Canucks have selected Abbotsford native Jake Virtanen. Read past the jump for some quick thoughts and analysis.
June 27 2014 02:27PM
With their 3rd trade of the day, the Canucks traded the 3rd round pick (85th overall) to the New York Rangers for 4th line forward Derek Dorsett. Dorsett is a Willie Desjardins favourite from his time in Medicine Hat, and this move is surely made to placate the new coach. Read past the jump for a bit more analysis.
June 26 2014 10:52AM
Zach Parise hasn't aged a day since 2003. Dustin Brown on the other hand was drafted at 13 years old.
So the 2014 NHL entry draft is just around the corner. NHL teams are assembling en masse in Philadelphia as we speak to prepare for the first day of the rest of their franchises' lives. Games have been watched, interviews have been conducted, numbers have been analyzed, and (as fans, we hope) that all the groundwork has been done to ensure that our favourite team comes away with a draft choice that sets themselves up for plenty of success in the future.
Of course, we know that this isn't the case. Someone is going to blow it. Someone is going to make a draft choice that everyone will look at in 5 years down the road and point and laugh at and say "HA! Can you believe the Rangers took Hugh freaking Jessiman instead of Ryan Getzlaf!?"
We just don't know who this someone will be. Yet. With hindsight being what it is, it almost makes you wonder if a potato could do better than some teams. I mean, just ask Oilers fans about the Kevin Prendergast years, or Leafs fans about any of the years. They're sure to tell you that, "no way man, my team is really the worst."
So here at Canucks Army, we decided that hey, why not take turns putting a potato named Sham Sharron in charge of amateur scouting for every NHL team in the league and see what happens? Well, as it turns out, Sham Sharron isn't half bad. But would Sham really be an upgrade for your team? Will he leave you crying bitter tears at the thought of the guys that your team should have drafted? Or will Sham have you thankful that your team's scouting staff is actually better at identifying hockey talent than an inanimate foodstuff? You'll have to read past the jump to find out.
June 18 2014 02:26PM
"It's not you, Jake. It's me."
When we're talking about player evaluations, it often seems like we get caught up in the whole black-or-white, he's-either-good-or-bad-there-is-no-alternative train of thought. While it's tempting to fall into this, the fact of the matter is that there's a hell of a lot of grey area when it comes to ranking players because no one really understands exactly how hockey works yet (similarly, no one really understands how gravity works either but that doesn't stop physicists from creating very accurate and detailed models based on what the best available approximations and theories tell us. This is a long-winded way of saying that Corsi, Fenwick and possession theory are our best available approximations of understanding hockey and yes we totally can accurately analyze hockey with numbers, you guys. But, I digress).
Similarly, there's a ton of grey area when ranking prospects, and perhaps the most contentious ranking we at Canucks Army have had is that of Jake Virtanen. Virtanen has a lot of good things going for him - he led all first-time draft eligible players in even strength goals, possesses a great shot relative to other CHLers, and is by all accounts one of the most "toolsy" players in the draft. In other words, he's a good NHL prospect.
Vancouver, however, would be smart to avoid Virtanen at 6th overall. Read past the jump to find out why.
June 10 2014 10:38AM
For a lot of Canucks fans, this is their first rodeo going in to the NHL entry draft with a high 1st round pick, and certainly the first time this has happened in the Twitter era. We're all a little excited. Unsure at what to make of this whole mess, but excited. What makes it all the more exciting is that a local kid - Vancouver's own Sam Reinhart - is projected to be one of the top prospects of this year's draft class, and according to Ben Kuzma, Jim Benning may be willing to move the 6th overall pick along with Bo Horvat to Florida for the 1st overall selection and the chance to draft him.
But hey, a rumour is just that: a rumour. This probably isn't going to happen (especially if you believe what Benning said to Mark Spector recently). As professional fans of an awful team, the guys at The Leafs Nation have gone through this "trade up for 1st overall!" hysteria before; nearly every year in fact. Unsurprisingly, nothing really ever comes of this talk, and we all get excited for nothing.
But what if...
What if Jim Benning really is out to make a big splash and land Reinhart? What if Vancouver is willing to part with their two highest draft picks since 1999 to make it happen? What if Florida goes for it? Is Sam Reinhart really that good? Is parting with Horvat and another top-10 draft pick really worth it? Should Vancouver do this deal if it's presented? Read past the jump to find out.