February 28 2012 10:38AM
To his credit Tony Gallagher, pictured right, was months ahead of the Hodgson trade story.
I haven't written about it at length like some of my Smylosphere colleagues have, but I'll admit it: I thought the Tony Gallagher led fan-base obsession with Cody Hodgson's ice-time this season was silly. Hodgson's deployment made sense to me for hockey reasons, so I didn't believe his limited ice-time was some sordid indicator of Alain Vigneault's dislike for his star rookie. I'd have liked to have seen Hodgson play more with the first power-play unit, but otherwise, the way Hodgson was sheltered and used this season seemed deliberate, and I figured he was being groomed for the long-term. Yep, I was way off the mark.
Read on past the jump.
February 27 2012 07:37PM
New Canucks defenseman Marc-Andre Gragnani makes a funny face.
Generally speaking the writers here at Canucks Army seem to think the Canucks did well at the trade-deadline. Adding Sami Pahlsson for two fourths and ECHLer Taylor Ellington was a fabulous deal. The Hodgson/Kassian trade is a bit more complicated - it's clearly a massive gamble, but the Canucks sold high on Cody Hodgson and improved themselves in the short term.
Interested in what the mainstream, National hockey media thought of Gillis' trade deadline handiwork? A full roundup, after the jump.
February 27 2012 04:04PM
Well, at least newly acquired Zack Kassian looks like a hockey player!
Mike Gillis loves to work to a deadline, and he proved that again with a blockbuster trade that only broke about thirty minutes after the deadline expired. What a ballsy deal this was for the Canucks General Manager, who has been the model of conservatism at the trade deadline in the past.
Needless to say, today Gillis departed from him usual approach and sent the well loved and absurdly talented Cody Hodgson to Buffalo, along with depth defenseman Alexander Sulzer in exchange for mammoth forward Zack Kassian, and young offensive defenseman Marc-Andre Gragnani. Wow.
Read past the jump!
February 27 2012 02:29PM
Lost in the furor surrounding the Cody Hodgson/Zack Kassian deal, was a minor deal the Canucks snuck in before the buzzer today. The team moved undrafted defensive prospect Sebastian Erixon to the Ducks for right-wing grinder Andrew Gordon. Here's the media release.
February 27 2012 02:00PM
The Vancouver Canucks, as we all know by know, dealt Cody Hodgson to the Buffalo Sabres for Zack Kassian, a winger described as a "rumbling bull" by TSN's Ray Ferraro. Also involved in the deal was Buffalo defenseman Marc-André Gragnani.
We knew that the deal might involve a Canuck minor leaguer, as Chicago Wolves general manager Wendell Young alerted the media that a trade affect the Canucks' AHL affiliate around noon Pacific time, but we didn't know to what extent this might affect the team. Perhaps they indicated that Kassian may play with the Wolves for the rest of the season.
Kassian, a 6'3", 228 lb behemoth who played on Canada's World Junior team in Buffalo, scored 77 points in just 56 games for the Windsor Spitfires in 2011. This season, Kassian has 15 goals in 30 games with Rochester of the AHL and 3 goals in 27 games with the Sabres.
Shipping out Hodgson and replacing him with Pahlsson is a move that benefits the Canucks in the short-term, even if that wasn't what we were expecting from Mike Gillis. Pahlsson is a centreman who can play the tough minutes in place of Hodgson, who has had to take on some sheltered shifts which increased his production past December. It was clear to the Canucks that Hodgson wasn't going to fit into this organization in the future as a centreman behind Henrik Sedin and Ryan Kesler, or at least not in their championship window.