Deadline day is upon us!
Will the Canucks buy, sell, do anything? Should we poke them with a stick?
Let’s round up the latest chatter and prepare ourselves for what could be the quietest trade deadline day in recent Canucks history.
What They’ve Already Done
The Canucks, along with the Ottawa Senators, are one of only two teams that haven’t made a trade this month. After Jim Benning set the draft floor on fire in June, he’s been absurdly quiet and it seems possible – even likely – that Benning’s conservatism will characterize draft day.
It’s a seller’s market and the prices are high.
Middle six forwards – like Curtis Glencross – are netting multiple top-100 draft picks.
Second pairing defensemen like Braydon Coburn and Jeff Petry are netting huge returns.
Could the high market prices change the calculus for Jim Benning and the Canucks, as it pertains to selling rental assets like Brad Richardson, Shawn Matthias, and Derek Dorsett? Don’t expect it too, as Benning apparently said late last week that the Canucks are not looking to sell any of their potential rental assets.
The dream of selling high on Matthias is, if not dead, certainly on life support.
While some fans are clamouring for the Canucks to kick the tires on a potential Kevin Bieksa or Luca Sbisa trade – particularly if the price is right – Bieksa is not going to waive his NTC, and Sbisa logged first-pair minutes on Sunday night. So don’t get your hopes up.
That likely leaves the Canucks kicking the tires on hockey type trades. Could the club deal Zack Kassian? Would it even make sense too? Maybe, but only if the asset coming back is as young or younger…
Players to target
We’ve written a lot on Patrick Wiercioch over the past few days, and it seems very possible that he’ll be dealt before the deadline:
There’s interest in Patrick Wiercioch and Eric Gryba, as there has been for the last few days, so those two are possible moves. #Sens
— Bruce Garrioch (@SunGarrioch) March 2, 2015
He’d be a good fit for the Canucks’ depleted blue-line.
The Canucks have been rumoured to be interested in Bartkowski for months, and he’d be an excellent fit to help bolster Vancouver’s depth on the left side of their blueline.
The Bruins’ defense corps isn’t look nearly as imposing as it has in the recent past though, so he may be off the market. Anything to help get Sbisa’s minutes burden under control would be helpful for the Canucks though.
If the Canucks are hoping to bolster their forward depth, Atkinson – a shifty, ace volume shooter – would appear to be a good fit. His name has been popping up in trade rumours all month, and the teams in the middle of those rumours may have all moved on:
Every team believed in mix for #CBJ Cam Atkinson – Chicago, Detroit, NY Rangers, Boston … — have acquired forwards.
— Aaron Portzline (@Aportzline) March 2, 2015
Atkinson is a fancy-stats darling, and would give the Canucks another one-shot goal scorer, something the club has lacked for years (though the presence of Radim Vrbata and Shawn Matthias has filled that need somewhat).