June 04 2013 04:33PM
2009 was another step forward, or so we thought.
It was Mike Gillis' second summer in charge. What was orginally a risky hire had paid off - Gillis signed free agents that worked, the team made the second round of the playoffs for the just the second time in more than a decade, everything looked on the upswing.
It was a summer that featured another decision to let a long-time face of the franchise go, while minting gold in a trade that can only be described as alchemy.
Yesterday, we looked at Mike Gillis' first summer in charge and found that he mostly did a pretty good job.
So, how did he fare in the summer of 2009?
June 04 2013 12:28PM
Screencap via NHL.com
The Canucks interviewed highly regarded coaching prospect Dallas Eakins last week, and will reportedly chat with deposed Dallas Stars bench boss Glen Gulutzan at some point this week. But apparently Eakins nailed his interview and will be brought in to chat with Mike Gillis and company for a second time in short order. Per Elliotte Friedman's latest 30 Thoughts column:
Glen Gulutzan's interview with the Vancouver Canucks will be some time this week. I still think there will be more candidates (Kings assistant John Stevens, for example). But there is a growing sense they really like Dallas Eakins, who coaches the AHL Toronto Marlies. Word is Eakins will do a second interview with Vancouver.
Well isn't that interesting. Read past the jump for more.
June 04 2013 11:45AM
Image via wikimedia commons.
It was reported by Arthur Staple of Newsday on Tuesday afternoon that Swiss born defenceman Mark Streit will not be re-signing with the New York Islanders before July 5th. Rather Streit will hit the open market as an unrestricted free-agent. A puck moving defenceman who can quarterback a power-play, Mark Streit has to be an intriguing piece for the Canucks. He's also a player the team reportedly pursued way back at the 2011-12 trade deadline.
Would Streit make sense for the Canucks to pursue? We'll get into it after the jump.
June 04 2013 10:19AM
Tanner Glass - Wikicommons Media
It has been a while since the Canucks have had a consistent trio of players on the fourth forward unit. Max Lapierre, for the most part, has played the role as fourth line center since coming over at the 2011 trade deadline, but to say that he has seen a revolving door of wingers would be a significant understatement.
Just because a fourth line is the fourth most important forward unit, that doesn’t mean that it should be overlooked.
There aren’t many NHL teams with a consistent fourth line nowadays, though. As depth players mature and improve, their salary demands increase. And because of this, teams continue to have to find more cost-effective options to place on the fourth line. This can be done through the draft or through smart open-market signings.
Over the next week, the past, present, and future of Vancouver’s fourth unit will be analyzed. Today, we look at the left winger(s).
June 03 2013 03:26PM
The 2007-08 season ended badly; the Canucks stumbled out of the playoffs, Markus Naslund moved on (and yes, that's Brad Isbister behind him), Dave Nonis was fired. (photo: Jeff Vinnick/Canucks.com)
When assessing Mike Gillis' record as GM, we must consider the lineup he had, year-by-year.
Appointed in the spring of 2008, Gillis had never worked in NHL management. Instead, he'd spent the better part of two decades as a player agent, cultivating a reputation as a black sheep. He was the agent who delivered massive contracts to Bobby Holik, Tony Amonte and others. Gillis was the lead agent who recognized better than the GMs how to best exploit the free agent market; his prediliction towards unconventional thinking is why Francesco Aquilini hired him.
In the five years since his appointment, the Canucks have won the second-most regular games in the league - only Pittsburgh have won more. And yet, a chorus of discontent has risen. In the wake of Alain Vigneault's firing, it got louder than at any other time during Gillis' tenure. 'The wrong guy is out,' many have screamed. 'Gillis is to blame!'
But is that really the case? Indeed, Mike Gillis inherited a solid young core from the previous regime. But has he really done nothing to improve this team? Beginning today, the first in a series of season-by-season looks at Gillis' work (or lack thereof) in assembling the team that two years ago was on the brink of glory and today stands at an apparent crossroads.
The 2008 off-season, after the jump.