2013 Canucks Draft Recap


Canucks first round draft pick Bo Horvat.
Image via Canucks.com.

The Canucks went into the 2013 NHL Draft needing to shed salary, bolster their bottom-six centre depth, add some heft to their prospect pipeline and address their goaltending log-jam. It was a tall order and the club managed to accomplish three of four, though they did so controversially and not in precisely the way most expected.

Regardless of whether or not Bo Horvat and Hunter Shinkaruk develop into stars, or whether the Canucks found serviceable NHL players in the likes of Cassels, Subban and Cederholm; Sunday, June 30th will be remembered as the day the Canucks waved the white flag on trading Roberto Luongo and moved the younger, more affordable Cory Schneider instead.

As much as the Canucks may claim, as Mike Gillis did after the conclusion of the first round, that "we didn’t feel there was a drop-off in either one’s play and felt (Luongo and Schneider) were both excellent, superb players," the fact is that Cory Schneider had usurped Luongo’s starters mantle over the past two seasons in Vancouver. Gillis admitted that the new collective bargaining agreement tied the clubs hands, while Laurence Gilman admitted that the team was dealing from a position of weakness leverage-wise. Both the Canucks General Manager and his Assistant seemed disappointed that the club didn’t manage to get a roster player, in addition to a top-pick, in their haul for Cory Schneider…

Read past the jump for more.

What’s particularly interesting about this Canucks draft is that, in terms of a pure talent haul, it looks at first blush like the best of the Mike Gillis era. That’s overshadowed of course by the Cory Schneider trade…

Bo Horvat was a bit of a reach at ninth overall, but he’s a skilled player who faced the toughest minutes among all London Knights centers and generated offense regardless. "He was a player that we have coveted from the outset of the year," Laurence Gilman said after the conclusion of the draft, "he’s the type of player that, y’know, we envision the Canucks being about. He’s a leader, he’s a future captain, he’s a big game player and we didn’t think there’d be any chance that a player of that caliber would be there at 24."

Those were sentiments echoed by Gillis earlier on Sunday when he described Horvat as "a 200-foot player," who compliments the pure offense that Hunter Shinkaruk brings to the table. "We got two complimentary players in the first round," said Gillis.

In Shinkaruk, Subban and Cederholm the Canucks took three players who were falling down the draft order due to the "risk" in their projections. For Shinkaruk it was his size and defensive play that caused him to fall to the end of round one, for Subban it was his size, and for Cederholm it was his perceived lack of offensive tools. On the topic of Shinkaruk, Gilman played down any concerns and raved about the young scorers tenacity "he’s an incredibly competitive kid, he’s very tenacious on the ice even though he’s not of big stature, but he never gives up," Gilman said, "that’s something our scouts just loved about him."

The other modest reach the Canucks made on Sunday was for Oshawa Generals centre Cole Cassels, who the team picked in the third round. Cassels faced some of the weakest competition among all Generals forwards a year ago, though his offensive production exploded in his sophmore major junior campaign as he was thrust into a top-six role on a juggernaut Generals club. 

At the tail end of the draft the Canucks took a college bound overager in defenceman Mike Williamson, in addition to an inexperienced CHL defenceman in Miles Liberati. In all, the Canucks eschewed the overager heavy draft strategy they’ve gone to in recent years and selected six eighteen year olds and two CHL players after round four. 

Asked about whether or not this draft was representative of a larger shift in the clubs overall amateur player procurement strategy, Gilman insisted it wasn’t. In his answer he dropped a curious nugget about the club drafting for positional need in past drafts:

"We’ve made some changes to the way that we’ve run our scouting staff. We’ve spent a great deal of time building our list in anticipation of this draft and we ran the draft for the most part based on the integrity of the list. In other years we have deviated, and in fairness to our scouts, we’ve deviated to draft for position. We were fortunate that the two picks that we got initially were very highly skilled centres which is something we’ve been looking for but we didn’t move to positional needs in this draft after we got the first two centres that we could draft whomever was available. And it just so happened that the players that we picked just so happened to be the highest guys on our list at the time of the selection."

Finally Gilman addressed what he called "a new era" for the clubs player development appartus, what with the addition of the Canucks owned AHL franchise (the Utica Comets). "Drafting is only one part, now we’ve got to develop them," Gilman said adding that "(player development and drafting) goes hand in hand."

It’ll be fascinating to watch how the Canucks handle the development of their 2013 draft class, and whether they err on the side of developmental caution or concede to the pressures of the salary cap era. "This is becoming a younger players league, more and more," Gilman explained "particularly teams at the top of the salary cap echelon like we are have a lot of pressure to place younger players on their roster because they’re more cost efficient."

  • JCDavies

    I don’t understand trading Schneider. Lou is a 34 year old goalie , how many #1 goalies are 34 and older in the NHL? I think Lou is a good goalie. So from an age angle it does not make sense to keep Lou.

    In the playoffs this year they pulled Schneider and later said he had some injury. Some speculation was he was having mental problems. Later they said groin. However Cory went on TV and said he was fine. Given he was traded I wonder, because it makes no sense to trade him , he is young he is a top 5 goalie in the NHL.

    I have to think there is more to the story and the mental angle at least it could be a reason.

    I guess the other is the owners did not want to buy out Lou and lose money.

    First round pick for Schneider is not enough. Given his reputation

    • JCDavies

      Canucks have two very good goaltender prospects in the pipeline with Lack and Eriksson. They’re probably afraid of a situation where in 2 years when Schneider is UFA, Lack or Ericksson takes over the starter job and we lose Schneider for free.

    • Fred-65

      Try and get your head around this VITAL point. After the moratorium on trades during lockout. The new CBA introduced a new rule, nicknamed the Luongo rule which made moving Luongo all but impossible. Luongo refused to move to TO in an agreed deal with BB prior to the lockout. There’s a lot came down in the recent Canucks/NHL history that worked against the Canucks it’s not all Gillis fault.

      • JCDavies

        “The new CBA introduced a new rule, nicknamed the Luongo rule which made moving Luongo all but impossible.”

        Why?

        People keep pointing to the new CBA as the reason for all this with little evidence as to its effect.

        While also ignoring there was time in September prior to the lockout/new CBA as well as a week after the lockout prior to the beginning of the new season.

        We shouldn’t just rationalize away Gillis’ reportedly ridiculous asking price from the beginning.

        Or his attempt to transition from the Luongo to the Schneider era.

        There were numerous blunders in Gillis’ process.

  • 72minutes

    @Sidney

    “I don’t understand trading Schneider. Lou is a 34 year old goalie , how many #1 goalies are 34 and older in the NHL? I think Lou is a good goalie. So from an age angle it does not make sense to keep Lou.”

    it’s because Lu is an immovable asset. You think Gillis didn’t try to trade him?

  • 72minutes

    Greeeaat. Now we trade a future goalie and kept an aged goalie who hasn’t been able to get it done for last 6-7 years? Maybe when Luo is 40 years old he’ll play like an 18 year old and bring us the cup. Oh well, at least there’s an excuse to mock and laugh at Gillis and those luuuoie fans when in another decade with leaky luo, they come to the realization that he can’t get it done. Enter half a CENTURY of Stanley Cup futility. I can predict it now, people will be crying, ” WE NEED A GOALIE!” Oh well, at least we had Schneider and we can all look back at the players we got for him, players that will no doubt end up on some other team! Good job Gillis and boneheads, I love a watching a good train wreck! Go go Vancouver Train Wrecks!

    • Couldnt agree with you more! Lui had melted down in consecutive yrs against chicago in the playoffs and then his road meltdowns in the finals in beantown likely cost us our 1st cup and our lack of team toughness. Gillis is a sellout! Can you imagine any high profile free agent wanting to come here now? I mean his word means nothing,he promises lui he will get traded,he promises Cory he will be the number1 and then he doesnt allow him to be a starter in edmonton who was going to give us more in return.He puts him in another tough situation with Marty still the numero uno.He should have bought out ballard and or booth. He never should have given volpatti away for nada!Seems Aqualini doesnt care about winning as much as saving money? And what kind of weak gm caters to a medling owner?News reports are owner flying to florida to smooth the overrated lui back.The wrong guy got canned in Alain and the best goalie was given away from a lousy gm.

  • 72minutes

    Jesse, If Lack was to over throw Schnieder in 2-3 years, that would be a welcomed problem to have. Because we could of traded Schnieder at the draft/trade deadline 2-3 years from now and gotten a couple picks maybe and a prospect, similar to what the Leafs offered last year for Luongo (word was Kadri was that prospect) but Gillis wasn’t ready to make that move because he ‘needed’ a 3rd line center, because a few months earlier he traded away a really good center that played on our 3rd line to Buffalo, which in itself was a bad trade, just by the timing of it.

    Gillis was handed a excellent team (mostly Burkes players) all Gillis had to do was retool the bottom 6 and get tougher, he has been retooling that bottom 6 for 5 years now and

    Raymond-Lappiere-Hansen
    Ebbet-Weise-Kassian/Seseto

    was the best he could do, factor in Roy as our rental and it looks a bit better, not by much though. Since after he traded for Ehroff, he has gotten swindled in every trade hes made.

    He handcuffed himself with the contracts of Ballard and Booth (almost 9 million) and Luongo and Schnieder (8 million) for 3 players either in the press box or IR or riding the bench, and now hes rumored to be trading Edler another reliable defensman just entering the prime of his career to relieve some cap space.

    If it wasn’t clear last year, it should be now, Gillis has no direct plan or design how this team should be built/managed, his actions from today onward will be a reflex to him saving his job, instead of maintaining the Canucks as a relevant contender 5-6 years down the road. the prospects today look good, but under Gillis’ guidance his drafting has been less then average.

    To sum it up, he’s not a very good Manager, I hope he is replaced before he does even more damage.

    Bring Back Burke

    • Mantastic

      I think Gillis has had his fair share of issues, but I think he’s also had his fair share of success as well. Look at the defense right now. 2/3s of that top six in Garrison, Hamhuis, Tanev and Corrado are of his doing, and no one is disputing the quality of that blue line.

      Gillis has had his issues, but I don’t think he’s a terrible GM, just not as great as he was during our cup run. I would have no issues with him being fired at this point considering that I believe Gilman is the far more valuable front office figure here in Vancouver.

  • 72minutes

    So let me get this right, Aquillini if you are reading this, your guy Gillis signs Roberto Luongo to that massive stupid undeserved contact and now because of that contract, you trade away one of the top young goalies in the NHL so that you can keep the Luongo who doesn’t even want to be here for another how many more years?

    Well, the ball is on your court so called Canuck fans, if you love this kind of incompetence, than by all means keep buying tickets to watch them, in return, you will keep getting this never ending POS excuse for a hockey organization…or you can choose to not support POS like Gillis but knowing some of the folks around this city, it’s like the former rather than the ladder. Man, no one in that organization has a CLUE. It’s like watching a guy sitting on his nuts, over and over again.

  • 72minutes

    Cory Schneider for WHO? OMG, Mike Monkey , you have really outdone yourself this time. You’re telling me that on that team there is not ONE guy you can dump to free up some cap space instead of trading your future goal tender away? Now it’d pretty clear to see why this team couldn’t get out of the first round in 2 years…with GM’s like Monkey Gillis working for ya, you don;t need enemies! Good job Mikey, pink slips for you next year and you will go down in history as the worst GM ever. Hope this sticks in the ribs of all Canuckle heads forever, this is truly the poster child for mickey mouse teams in the NHL.

  • If Schneider was still here in two years, and either of our elite prospects in goal (or our other top prospect Cannata) developed into a top goaltender, Schneider would have been hesitant to stay for sure.
    This way, if we have Lack and/or Eriksson develop into tandem starters by next year, we can use a compliance buyout on Luongo, then have them start.
    That works better than trading Luongo for nothing, then losing Schneider for almost nothing in two years.

  • In all fairness, why should Gillis give a crap about this team when he knows he’ll be fired in a year or two and be exposed like his team was exposed by Boston? Gillis is like Unicron, the planet eating galactic destroying in Transformers…only Unicron’s appetite for destruction was for other planets, Gillis is intent and content to destroy himself and his own team.

  • No wonder the people of Vancouver like to riot, it costs 5 dollars for a ride on SlyPit, Their politicians love building bike lanes for themselves with tax money, they pay 50% in gas tax, their ICBC is ripping them off, High property tax, air care, HST, PST, GST, transit tax, carbon tax, beer tax, cheese board, milk board, wheat board, tax tax tax and now the GM of their team is demolishing their entire team. I’m surprised they haven’t burned the whole city down yet. Well, I guess they wouldn’t want to burn down those lovely bike lanes, otherwise the down towners would get angry like they’re angry at tourists who are having too much fun. ” No talking while i’m trying to nap on a public beach!” LOL

  • “What’s particularly interesting about this Canucks draft is that, in terms of a pure talent haul, it looks at first blush like the best of the Mike Gillis era.”

    Considering the Canucks traded their best player, they damn well better have had a respectable draft.

    We shall see how it goes with these prospects.

    It appears a large appeal with the two first rounders is that they are fairly close to the NHL and can provide value on their ELCs.

    Along with the reported 1st rounder offered for rental Clarkson, the 2nd + KConn trade for rental Roy and drafting two players likely to be middle-bottom of the roster players, it appears Gillis is in full on job saving mode.

    He needs these two players to provide quick impact due to cap issues. Moving Schneider on its own doesn’t give the Canucks much flexibility.

    Even with Ballard off the roster, it will be a cheap 2nd line winger, cheap 3rd line centre, cheap 6th defenseman, cheap backup goalie and cheap 10-14 forwards.

    Irrespective of whether or not these prospects become quality NHLers, by trading Schneider and keeping Edler the Canucks have decreased their chances of winning playoff rounds next year.

    Replacing Schneider with Lack/Erickson, Ballard with Corrado, Raymond with Kassian/Jensen & Roy with Horvat/Gaunce/Schroeder may work down the road.

    But considering the volatile and non-linear manner in which prospects develop, there is little reason to believe the Canucks will improve next year.

    Espescially considering these prospects are drawn from one of the bottom 5 systems in the league aside from Horvat.

    How does Luongo feel considering Gillis has jerked him around for so long?

    How does Edler feel knowing the Canucks made him available a few months after he agreed to a heavily discounted contract?

    How does Schneider feel considering he signed a contract and gave up 2 UFA years based on the premise he was the Canucks #1 goalie? And now he has to work in a time share with Brodeur when he rightfully deserved to be a free agent and go to a franchise where he is an undisputed #1.

    Messed. All of it.

  • One of the worst trades in the history of the nucks! This may rate up there with Barry pederson for an upcomming power forward star in Cam neely.We lose the best goalie we had for an unproven 18yr old 9th pick? And we still have Edler, Booth,Raymond,Ballard,Roy?
    AND HE COULDNT MOVE SOME OF THEM? Gillis is the worst gm

  • I get that the mood is sour, because today was not a good look for the Canucks.

    But ultimately they traded a redundancy for a top-10 pick and got more value than they would have if they’d kept Schneider and bought Lu out or traded him for scraps. Schneider is a really good player, but Luongo is consistently elite and goaltenders – particularly elite goaltenders – don’t tend to really begin to show their age until 38.

    • Mantastic

      traded a known quantity for a magic bean. poor asset management, the canucks spent years developing their 1st round pick just to flip it for a magic bean.

    • orcasfan

      Overall, it looks like a very good draft. And, remember, this was supposed to be a special, deep draft year. I was happy to have 2 picks in this 1st round, for sure! For comparison, look at Pittsburgh.

      Yesterday, Gillis moved into the ranks of the “real” GM’s in the league. Certainly trading Schneider for the 9th pick was a difficult and controversial move. And the capacity to make those is what we expect from a good GM. But what really “graduated” Gillis was that he needed to see his players as “assets” that could be moved around. I’m sure that went against the grain for him, since he’s always been seen as being very considerate (perhaps overconsiderate) of his players. All in all, it was a very difficult situation, that he managed to “resolve” in the way that was considered best for the team, currently and in the future.

      As far as Lu’s age is concerned, I’ll just remind folks that Thomas won the Vezina, etc at age 37. And then, of course, there is Brodeur!

      • orcasfan

        “Overall, it looks like a very good draft.”

        Every team is happy on draft day. Give it a year.

        “As far as Lu’s age is concerned, I’ll just remind folks that Thomas won the Vezina, etc at age 37. And then, of course, there is Brodeur!”

        Lou doesn’t have the athleticism of those two. Or Hasek, for that matter.

        He’s a blocker.

  • JCDavies

    I like what Gillis did and dealt Schneids to get a good pick. The Devils didn’t pay much for Schneids and I think if they also gave up their 2nd round pick, it would’ve been a fair deal.

    One goalie had to go. We had to get a return on whoever went. Lu wasn’t going anywhere with that contract. Schneids had to be dealt but I wish we got just a biiiiiiiiiiiit more for him.

    I was hoping Edler and Burrows would also be dealt but no such luck. Now we’re stuck with them (as well as Higgins) because of the no trade clauses. That means the same core that was eliminated in round 1 for two years in a row is still together – and two years older. Not good!

    Gillis has a bit of wiggle room if he buys out Ballard. I just don’t know who comes in to help the roster for the 2013-2014 season. The free agent group is underwhelming and will be over priced. We can’t deal any of our good, desirable players because they’re locked in with no trade clauses. I’m really wondering how we improve next season!

    • Mantastic

      One goalie had to go, unfortunately, it was the wrong one!

      We got a good deal, the Devils didn’t pay too much for Schneids? Who’s team are you on. mate? Last time I checked, when you make a trade, you are supposed to try and get MORE in return, NOT LESS.

      Edler is a medocre player, no one wants him and it’s funny that Gillis asked so much for him and yet gave Schneids away for beer cap. Next year, I’m going to love it when Luo has a few more of his meltdowns and I’m going to love watching the look of being crushed on their fans faces again, time after time. If there is one thing I can count on from those Canucks, it’s losing and their losing ways. Note to all NHL players, if you’re old, over rated , then go play for the Canucks, best country club in all of NHL.

      Gillis I hope you rot in hell cause loserville obviously hasn’t taught you anything.

  • JCDavies

    The thing I find most concerning about today’s events are the reports about the owners’ involvement in the management of the club. Nothing good ever comes from owners trying to be General Managers. If these reports are true, the Canucks are on there way to becoming the next NY Islanders or Oakland Raiders.

  • Mantastic

    A 34 goaltender is still elite? Man, then hockey must be an old man’s sport. The fact remains that when you keep an old goalie who has not gotten the job done and traded away a young potential star goalie, it speaks volumes of what the Canucks really are. They have done nothing but expose themselves in this draft. They obviously cannot draft players, they can’t develop players,they can’t trade for a watermelon away if they tried, and they sure as hell can;t build a team. To build something, you’re making it better. Keeping an old man in goal is not ” building”, it’s demolition.

    Imagine if Gillis ran an Olympic track and field team, why, you’d be watching 30 something year olds sprint while the young talent get traded off to somewhere else. In many sports disciplines, 25 year olds are considered over the hill. Ah, no wonder so few teams in this league ever win the cup, how can you win the SC or have a dynasty when most of the players in the NHL are like Luongo, over paid, OLD, and can’t get the job done and cant get traded because some dumb GM gave the old donkeys a NTC. I’m going to watch something some old donkeys who can’t get the job done I’d be watching golf instead!

    This is why the NHL is going down, dumb rules and old players like Luongo with nothing left to give but a smelly jock strap. Man, there are so many cougar lovers in the west. That trade was embarrassing to watch on TSN. All the experts where shaking their heads saying Gillis could have gotten more. Why doesn’t Gillis just save himself the trouble and fire his own ass now instead of wasting another few years. Most original Canucks fans are already dead waiting for a cup that you know is never going to come. I’d like a job at the Canucks org, usually , when you do something stupid in life, you get punished. When you do something stupid in there, they call you GM or the Canucks organization.

    Here’s what should be next years Canucks Slogan.
    – ” Canucks.. if we’re not pissing off our best players, we’re trading them away!”

    • Jesse, bamdwagoners are folks who think their team can do no wrong and cheer for them no matter what. Sound familiar? Even the sports analysts on the 2 major sports network says it was a bum deal trade. i take it you know more then they?
      And speaking of Gillis and that D line, name me one thing they have accomplished? First round exit in the play offs? People who criticize the team are not bandwagoners, they are the ones who have not drank the Canuck Coolaid, that’s all. There is no way sometimes to say it’s a stupid dumb trade better than it’s a stupid dumb trade.

      We can’t fault people for speaking their minds and having an opinion, can we? Other wise, it would not be an opinion but propaganda or a shills comment.

  • It’s a shame about the Schneider trade, but every team in the league knew that they had the Canucks over a barrel about that one. You can blame Gillis for the big Luongo contract, but pre-lockout, that was actually an excellent contract. And then you just need to look at the money Mike Smith got yesterday to know that his caphit is completely reasonable. It’s just the length of term and the “Luongo Rule” that the league created that put the Canucks in such a crappy position.

    As far as the draft goes, a second round pick would have been nice, but overall I think they did really well. I’m really high on Horvat. In three or four years you could see

    Kesler
    Schroeder
    Gaunce
    Horvat

    down the middle. That’s some serious depth at center right there.

    I would have rather seen Ryan Hartman or Adam Erne taken with their second pick, but we’ll see what this Shinkaruk kid can do. Maybe he comes in and puts up numbers like the next Phil Kessel.

    Cassels and Subban seem like two solid hockey blood line picks. Cassels sounds like a future 3/4 line guy. Not a fighter, but a steady agitator, maybe of the Jannik Hansen variety. Subban’s small, but looks super skilled, and if they ever let him play in the NHL I think he’ll be a lot of fun to watch.

    Cederholm seems like he could be a nice big body addition to the D-line and I have this hunch that the Liberati pick is going to look like a steal in a few years.

    Can’t wait to see these guys in training camp!

  • It is funny reading all these “the sky is falling” & “GMMG sucks” posts. As usual, the situation is neither as bad or as good as it is made out to be (by the media).

    FACT : GMMG declares that Schnieder is now the team’s undisputed starting goalie after the LA Series.

    Opinion: I think that he mismanaged the goaltending situation (ownership interference?) by not standing behind Luongo; in doing so diminishing the value of this asset. Watch how PITT handles the Fluery situation in the coming months, to better understand what GMs should do when they are trying to trade their starting goalie. That said, this mismanagement might turn out to be a blessing in disguise.

    FACT : Schneider would have been a pending RFA with arbitration rights after the end of the 2012-2013 season and a UFA after the 2013-2014 season.

    Opinion : Schneider would most likely would not have likely signed the 3 year extension. Due to his self professed desire to be a starting goalie, the most likely scenario would have either been a one year contract, with the distinct possibility of it having to go to arbitration (anyone remember last year’s Weber dispute with NAS?) or us trading away his RFA rights before this year’s arbitration hearings (high draft pick or prospect). I would suggest that the latter would have been the most likely outcome, since we are up against the cap and would have been in a bad spot if we had to be stuck with losing arbritation (he has good numbers remember?) and getting almost nothing in return for him after the 2013-2014 season (low draft pick for his negotiating rights).

    FACT : Schneider was traded for the #9 overall pick in a strong draft year.

    Opinion : All the media noise aside, I have serious doubt that GMMG would ave turned down offer of Edmonton’s 1st, 2nd and a (good) roster player in favour of NJ’s 1st. I’m thinking That the former was more likely the asking price by Canucks brass if we were to move him within the Conference (until we hear otherwise from Edmonton’s front office). I like that he we will only play him twice a year (less so if we meet him in the Cup finals) and believe that our return from the trade was fair (abeit not stellar). Especially considering that this year’s #9 pick could easily have be a Top 5 pick in a weaker draft year. My only hope is that the scouts are right with their assessment and that we get at least a good young player in Horvat.

    FACT: The fact of the matter is that Luongo is still a top 10 starting goaltender (by save % and GAA) with a good cap hit.

    Opinion : While Schneider is without doubt the better goaltender when you consider his skill set and his age, I would suggest that it is only a marginal upgrade to this team and that Luongo can still serve adequately for the next 3-4 years. Any hopes of ever trading his before the 2018-2019 season was dashed with the new CBA. Letting an asset like this go via a buyout is without question STUPID (especially if you can get a 1st rounder for Schneider). I would suggest that there would be an opportunity to move Luongo when the ratio of his cap hit to actual paid salary is > 1. Look for him to be moved to a team struggling to get to the cap floor, as a veteran backup in the last 3 years of his contract (Florida anyone?).

    FACT : The Canucks core players will need replacing soon.

    Opinion : Our best shot at the Cup with this group (as they are currently constructed) was in 2009. Chances of the Canucks winning it all with Sedins as first line players are gone (that was why I was disappointed with us not doing a fire sale of pending UFAs ala SJ at the trade deadline). That is not to say that we cannot win with the Sedins as second line players (if they resign) and with Kelser as a 3rd line shutdown centre. Our defence is solid and will be intact until 2015-2016 season (Hamhius and Bieska UFA). The key to the reload will be finding the new first line in the next 2 years from our prospect pool (Kassian, Jensen, Rodin, Horvat, Shinkaruk) while we wait for the salary cap to inevitably creep up again.

    • orcasfan

      He’s also the save percentage leader over the last 3 years.

      Yes the sample of shots isn’t too big. But that is management’s fault, not his.

      He’s not Lundqvist or Raask yet. But a 60 game season with any of the save percentage seasons he has put up in the last 3 will put him in the conversation for best goalie in the league.

      “Luongo is consistently elite and goaltenders – particularly elite goaltenders – don’t tend to really begin to show their age until 38.”

      You are ignoring the evolution of the goaltending position in the last 5-10 years.

      Luongo has been a star since his early 20s. He’s pretty much hovered around his .919 career save percentage in most seasons.

      Save percentages continue to go up while Lou hovers around his career average. Hence, his relative value continues to decline.

      This is largely due to the new wave of NHL goalies that have size and athleticism. It used to be one or the other.

      It’s the reason Schneider has benefited far more from Melanson’s positional changes than Lou, I’d argue.

      Schneider has the quick twitch abilities to play deeper and more reactive style. Lou is more of a blocker which is why playing deeper hasn’t exactly helped him, I’d argue.

      I don’t think it’s helpful to simply point to variances of a single stat (save percentage) while ignoring the technical advantages that Schneider possesses over Lou. Schneider “scouts” a hell of a lot better than Lou I’d suggest.

      Finally, kudos to you and the other CA writers for the fantastic coverage this weekend 🙂

      • Mantastic

        Horvat doesn’t have anywhere near the ceiling of Schneider. Yesterday was the culmination of a 15 month fleecing. That’s a reply to Drance as well…

        If Gillis could have been satisfied with Bozak and a 2nd rounder, the Canucks would have the following:

        1: Schneider
        2: Late 1st rounder (Canucks)
        3: 2nd rounder (Leafs)
        4: 2nd rounder (Canucks)
        5: Connauton
        6: 1 year of Bozak

        Instead, the Canucks have the following”

        1: Luongo
        2: Horvat
        3: Shinkaruk
        4: Handful of games from Roy

        Not to mention wasting 1-2 years of the Schneider asset during the peak of the Canucks win curve.

        And keeping Edler which likely means the entire core of $4+ million players is back. Except for the team MVP.

        The Canucks core is worse and there is very little flexibility for depth additions.

        All in the name of adding another low-medium ceiling, high floor prospect to the system.

        FFS

        • JCDavies

          “If Gillis could have been satisfied with Bozak and a 2nd rounder, the Canucks would have the following:

          1: Schneider 2: Late 1st rounder (Canucks) 3: 2nd rounder (Leafs) 4: 2nd rounder (Canucks) 5: Connauton 6: 1 year of Bozak”

          You’re assuming that trade with Toronto was ever going to happen. When Burke was there, the trade was blocked by Luongo and I’m not convinced Nonis ever wanted to trade.

          • JCDavies

            Do we really need to have this “if the rumors are true debate” again?

            “When Burke was there, the trade was blocked by Luongo.”

            Where is the evidence that Lou blocked a trade to Toronto in September?

          • JCDavies

            You also base you opinions on rumours and you write things like:

            “IF GILLIS could have been satisfied … the Canucks WOULD have the following:”

            Which is a statement with a lot of certainty. Where is your evidence?

          • JCDavies

            If we don’t use the rumours, what do we have?

            Statements like “when Burke was there, the trade was blocked by Luongo” are entirely premised on rumours.

            And I’m not even sure which rumours you are using here.

            Are you suggesting there wasn’t an opportunity to move Lou to Toronto in September?

            You seem to be avoiding this period of time for some reason…

          • JCDavies

            I’m not following you here. First you write:

            “Where is the evidence that Lou blocked a trade to Toronto in September?”

            The you write:

            “If we don’t use the rumours, what do we have?”

            Are you or are you not insisting on evidence?

          • JCDavies

            Yes, I think there was an opportunity to make a trade in September, if they could come to an agreement.

            What I am suggesting is that Gillis wasn’t the only guy in the room and we don’t really know what did or did not happen. What role did Burke play? Leafs ownership? Luongo and his agent?

      • JCDavies

        “over 6 years development for a worse return than Bernier. /fail”

        Frattin, Scrivens and a 2nd round pick would not have been enough to procure a top-ten pick.

  • orcasfan

    @orcasfan re: seeing players as “assets”:

    I think you hit the nail on the head. Gillis has always given a spiel about knowing how to treat players, keeping them happy, etc. But this last year may have taught him to stop being so patient with them. I’d add one more thing that I haven’t seen anyone say: he has served notice that anyone can be traded, or put on the market. The all-star goailie with the 12 year contract, the goalie of the future, the puck-carrying defenseman (Edler).i don’t mean this in the “it was just a country club” sense. But now it’s real, and players coming back next year will be more aware of that. It’ll probably cost the Canucks at some point in “hometown discount,” but maybe it’ll help in other ways.

    So Torts was just the beginning. Also, my guess is that ownership is always involved in big decisions, or at least informed, about personnel.

  • Fred-65

    Why didn’t Vancouver trade Schneider to Philly for Sean Couturier.

    Immediate help for an aging core window is shutting or closed.. Horvat is still a couple of years away from being that 2 way center you want.

    • JCDavies

      I assume it wasn’t on the table.

      That’s the biggest problem with yesterday. The timing of all of this is highly unlikely to work.

      By the time Gillis’ forwward prospects are regularly occupying the middle-bottom of the roster, the core will be too old.

      And that is the best case scenario. Some of these prospects will inevitably fail. The ones that hit aren’t likely to be impactful enough.