April 27 2016 01:00PM
Jake Virtanen has been All Around the World this year. He spent the season with the Canucks after making the team out of training camp, and he also visited Finland to take part in the World Junior Championships. His season could be best described as a roller coaster, but you'd be hard pressed to say he didn't get more confident as the year went on.
Regardless, all that matters is his rookie campaign is under his belt, and he showed glimpses he could be the player the Canucks expected when they drafted him sixth overall. So Wait for a Minute, Hold Tight, I'll Show You how Virtanen's rookie campaign fared. PS: Sorry.
April 27 2016 11:00AM
I can't remember a more bizarre two season run than the one Radim Vrbata first enjoyed, then endured, as a member of the Vancouver Canucks.
Signed in the 2014 off-season to a two-year, $10-million contract in unrestricted free agency, Vrbata was a revelation in his first season as a Canuck. The Czech volume shooter set a career high in points with 63 and scratched at the heels of his career high in goals, falling just short of the 35 he scored in 2012, with 31 markers. The cherry on top: being voted by his teammates as Team MVP.
That was the peak, with a valley not far in the distance. One might blame the Canucks for not dealing Vrbata at his highest value, but surely even the most pessimistic among us didn't expect so precipitous a drop in play over the course of an off-season. There was no reason to expect Vrbata's stock to go full-Enron. Entirely possible that his value might have been as high, or higher, at the following deadline.
April 27 2016 09:00AM
The Los Angeles Kings and Chicago Blackhawks eliminated? In the same round, you say? I'm not even going to feign objectivity. That's damn good hockey.
That brings us to a more Canucks related question, though. The elephant in the room that will follow this team into the off-season. Will they, or won't they sign Milan Lucic? The Vancouver, B.C. native is set to hit unrestricted free agency and there's been speculation all year that the Canucks will jump to the occasion as presumptive suitors.
We've already touched on Lucic as a free agent option in this space, and whether there are better alternatives. But today I'm looking to find out how you would react to a Lucic signing, in a vacuum. Do you approve? Are there conditions on your approval, like, say, term and annual average value? Let your voice be heard.
April 26 2016 02:48PM
The Vancouver Canucks have signed restricted free agent forward Markus Granlund to a two-year contract extension today.
As per General Fanager, the annual cap hit is $900,000.
April 26 2016 01:00PM
Whether you're perusing the shady alleys of the Smylospher in forums or chatrooms alike - or catching up on the latest John Garrett article - there's always an impending sense of doom attached to the Vancouver Canucks.
Though much of this is attached to the on-ice product and the forty-plus years of futility attached, it's been similarly tinted by the events that followed them off the ice, too. It's easy enough to find a starting point. Look at their inaugural draft in 1970. One of two expansion teams (the Buffalo Sabres being the other) Vancouver lost out on the first overall selection and Gilbert Perrault, settling for Dale Tallon at second.
This city still hasn't forgiven the league for that one. There've been plenty of good moment too, though. I've captured the five best and luckiest, on the other side of the jump. Let's get to it.