July 1st Preview: the Landscape and the Free Agent Targets

Dimitri Filipovic
July 01 2014 10:46AM

Last year's big free agent frenzy coup; things can surely only get more exciting this year.

If your loved ones had intentions on using Canada Day to spend some quality time with you this year, they've likely got another thing coming. The window for signing unrestricted free agents opens up at 9 AM PST tomorrow morning, and if you're a regular reader of this blog then I think it's fair to assume that the Hockey Holiday takes precedence over the Statutory Holiday for you. Please like our sport.

Last year's frenzy - whose onset was pushed back until July 5th because of the lockout - saw 81 new deals (including some of the RFA variety) formally announced; they ranged from inconsequential AHL-fodder to legitimately impactful NHLers, and everything in between. There were 65 in '12, and 74 in '11, respectively. 

While it's generally a captivating day for a hockey fan, the Canucks in specific haven't exactly lit the world on fire themselves with their initial burst of signees. The list of players they've lured over on the first day the past 3 years includes Jason Garrison, Brad Richardson, Marco Sturm, Yannick Weber, Mark Mancari, and Alex Biega. It was particularly bleak last summer when the financial situation of the team handcuffed then-General Manager Mike Gillis' hands. While all sorts of money was flying around, the new shiny toy for the Canucks was a player that wound up showing that he asking him to play in a top-9 role was probably asking too much of him.

It could potentially be a completely different story tomorrow for a variety of reasons. Whether that's actually a good thing is something that we'll just have to wait and see. 

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Canucks thinking about getting Iggy With It?

J.D. Burke
July 01 2014 10:24AM

#456606401 / gettyimages.com

Lost in all the talk surrounding the Canucks courting of soon-to-be unrestricted free agent goaltender, Ryan Miller, were the reports that the team was setting itself up to take a run at Jarome Iginla, should he hit free agency. There's fraternizing with the enemy, and then there is this.

Canucks fans will remember Iginla for his decade-plus of service as captain of the rival Calgary Flames; some with reverence, others disdain. By large, though, Iginla's name is associated with the type of "meat and potatoes" style of hockey that Jim Benning and Trevor Linden have made clear they're fond of. Is there a match to be made here? 

Find out on the other side of the jump.

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Canucks choose not to qualify Schroeder, Dalpe; let them walk

Dimitri Filipovic
June 30 2014 03:38PM

What a world.

You can now officially add two new names to the list of unrestricted free agents set to hit the market tomorrow morning, as the Vancouver Canucks have announced today that they will not be extending qualifying offers over to two youngish, formerly highly regarded but now vastly underwhelming centers. 

It's a little surprising given that you figured someone like Schroeder would be worth giving another non-committal, low-risk chance since it seems like guys that were once former 1st round picks get endless opportunities at this level to try and regain what they once appeared to have. 

The Canucks obviously didn't think so, and quite frankly, it's hard to get too worked up about it. With Schroeder and Dalpe now gone, that leaves the Canucks with 4 RFAs left.

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Fine, let's talk about Ryan Miller

Cam Charron
June 30 2014 12:57AM

Sure... why the hell not?

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Nation Network recap of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft with Steve Dangle and Dimitri Filipovic

Steve Dangle
June 29 2014 06:20PM

Screen shot 2014-06-29 at 11.53.26 AM

DRAFT RECAP! Steve Dangle of Leafs Nation (me) and Dimitri Filipovic from Canucks Army recap the action from Philadelphia and the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.

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