Contract News: Gragnani, Rome, Ebbett, Duco, Oreskovich all on their way out

Thomas Drance
June 25 2012 03:18PM

Last summer, I would often tell my Twitter followers to disregard much of what the @News1130Sports twitter feed put out there. It was inconsistent, and occasionally misinformed and misleading. But it has undergone some sort of massive revamp and has become - easily - the most up to date source for breaking Canucks news over the past month.

The 1130 feed was the first out of the gate reporting the qualifying offers to Schneider, Lack and Weise several days ago, then broke the "Jensen to play in Sweden" news late last week, and today has been nailing it on unqualified restricted free-agents, and on which of Vancouver's pending Unrestricted Free Agents are likely to hit the open market in five days time. Kudos to them for their good work, they're are absolutely crushing it of late and are a must follow.

Today they gave us another round of breaking news regarding the status of Aaron Rome, Andrew Ebbett and Victor Oreskovich. Later in the day Ben Kuzma broke the news regarding the status of Ryan Parent, Marc-Andre Gragnani and Mike Duco, none of whom will return to the team.

We now have a pretty clear picture of who the Canucks will retain this summer, and who will be on their way out of the door. Let's spend a moment on each, discuss their Vancouver tenure, and touch on how easy or difficult they'll be to replace.

Click "Read More" to do just that. 

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Strombabble: as the dust settles

Thomas Drance
June 25 2012 12:39PM

As the NHL Draft came and went, and the dust began to settle, Roberto Luongo remained the property of the Vancouver Canucks. As the draft concluded on Saturday afternoon, Gillis played coy, and rejected the notion that the draft was any sort of formal deadline for a trade: "[a Luongo deal is] certainly not going to be done because of the pressure of selecting kids who in all likelihood aren't going to be significantly involved in this team." But the reality of the situation is that he's taking on a considerable level of risk with his obstinance.

Of course, Luongo's continued presence on the Canucks roster set off a new round of conflicting reports, anonymously sourced rumours and other scuttlebutt.

With that in mind let's dust off another installment in our Strombabble series, and dissect what's reportedly going on with Gillis' asking price, the possibility of Luongo ending up on Vancouver's AHL affiliate farm-team, and the more outlandish possibility of Luongo "steering" a potential trade toward his preferred destination - Vancouver's quadruple A farm-team: the Florida Dale Tallons.

Read past the jump for more.

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Brendan Gaunce REAX

Thomas Drance
June 22 2012 11:41PM

I watched a single Belleville Bulls game last season, and frankly, I barely noticed Brendan Gaunce (I was mostly paying attention to Nicklas Jensen). As such, I know next to nothing about him, though I was in his media scrum this evening and he seemed like a bright kid.

Anyone writing about a prospect like Gaunce as if they can tell you the specifics about what he needs to improve in his skating stride to really succeed at the NHL level is being intellectually dishonest. I know next to nothing about Gaunce's game, though I can tell you that the OHL scout I talk to (his name is Victor and we're buddies on Twitter) raves about him.

Luckily, there are people who get paid well to cover prospects, it's there business, and I figured it would be worthwhile to recap what they were saying about Gaunce in the lead up to the draft.

Click past the jump for more.

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Canucks Select Brendan Gaunce at #26

Thomas Drance
June 22 2012 08:45PM

With the 26th pick in the 2012 NHL entry draft, the Canucks selected centre Brendan Guance from the Belleville Bulls of the Ontario Hockey League. Gaunce fits in with what Laurence Gilman told the Press the team was looking for: "If we were to assess a need we have, it'd be at forward, perhaps centre in particular." Gaunce tips the scales at close to 200 pounds, so he's another in a string of big forwards whom the Canucks have drafted in the past two years, and he plays in the OHL making him the third first round pick that the Canucks have selected from the Ontario Hockey League since Gillis took over as General Manager. 

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Scott Arniel Deal Close, Not Final

Thomas Drance
June 22 2012 05:40PM

Despite reports from reputable sources from Ken Wiebe to Aaron Portzline, former Blue Jackets and Manitoba Moose head coach Scott Arniel has not yet finalized a deal with the Canucks - according to Vancouver's front-office (by way of Iain Macintyre).

The delay is vaguely reminiscent of last summer, when MacTavish's hiring was "confirmed" by Nick Kypreos, and then didn't occur for weeks. So while it's not final, presumably a deal remains close, and certainly Vancouver's head office has a high opinion of Arniel's abilities behind the bench.

Click past the jump for more.

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