WWYDW: Prospects!


There are few topics we like to write about at Canucks Army like prospects. In fact, you could make a case that the prospect profile series marks our favourite time of year.

We’re almost finished with that series now, though, as Jeremy Davis just checked in with the second-ranked prospect in our consensus rankings. Which means that come Thursday, we’re all out of prospects to, well, profile.

In the meantime, I wanted to hear your take. How do you rank the Canucks prospects? Using the Canucks Army method, which means any Calder Trophy eligible prospect, who cracks your top best twenty, ten or five list, and in what order?

Last week I asked: What should the Canucks do to put the finishing touches on their lineup? Trade suggestions, free agency… hell, standing pat even. What’s your suggestion?


Stand pat. Unless there’s a hockey trade where we can substantially upgrade our top six while moving out a couple of players we can’t protect in advance of the expansion draft (we’re already juggling some awkward combination of Hansen, Baertschi, Rodin—if he turns out to be any good—etc., and we can’t keep them all). Barring last year’s injury fiasco, this outfit looks as though it should be good enough to make the playoffs or, at least, be within sniffing distance. But also: other teams might find themselves in a similar predicament as the season wears on. The trade deadline could be interesting, and not just about pending UFA contracts going to contenders. There could be some shuffling, and I would be okay with the Canucks having a bit of flexibility if the right opportunity should present itself. I’m not sure there’s a single player in the league (whether we can afford him or not) who immediately turns us into contenders this year. So, I’m okay with wait-and-see.


Nolan Patrick would look pretty good in Canucks blue & green…

Not saying the team should tank. But let’s be honest, this almost the exact same team that finished 28th last season. The offense received an upgrade, but the defense is worse (I like Gudbranson but he’s a downgrade from Hamhuis) and the goaltending is status quo.

Sure there was a late season collapse, but when you look at the bottom teams from last year, the Canucks and Leafs are the only ones that don’t look like they are aren’t primed for a much better season.


I don’t see Benning doing a one year deal with a veteran like Hudler. I think he’s learned his lesson with Bartkowski. He could have kept Corrado, but then CA bloggers and those idiots at 1040 would have nothing to talk about (sorry, could not help myself).

I think he’s vulturing around Columbus to see if he can pry one of their forwards given cap space and expansion draft – I hope its either Boone Jenner or John Drouin. I still think Benning has a lit candle in the window sill for Evander Kane. As Bert said, “it is what it is”.

Florida….what a mess. Dale Tallon builds a Chicago-esque foundation and the ex CA bloggers / analytics guys are tearing it down. Wow.


Meh, there really isn’t much left out there. People keep bringing up Brandon Pirri, who isn’t bad, but is he really an upgrade over any one of Baertschi, Horvat, Sutter, Hansen, Burrows? Do you want him blocking ice time from developing guys like Virtanen, Rodin, Gaunce, or Etem? Because that’s exactly what he’d do. I don’t think picking up another top 9 forward is really worth our time unless one of 2 things happens:

A) We trade someone to make room (preferably Dorsett, maybe Granlund – I don’t see where he fits)


B) The player coming in is a proven top 6 guy that is guaranteed to improve our ability to score goals. That’s the only way it make sense to block a roster spot from one of the young guys.

In the case of A, I don’t think that’s going to happen – no one wants to trade for those guys, so it would be a much more significant piece going out the door. In the case of B, there aren’t any of those guys left on the UFA market. Maybe let’s stand pat?


Hold on to the cap space and play the kids.

This is not a playoff team this year, even with the addition of a veteran winger.

Give guys like Etem and Gaunce a chance to play on Sutter’s wing and see what they can do. Plus Larsen and Rodin are still question marks. Roll with a younger lineup and make decisions on some of these guys at the deadline.

The pending expansion draft will make this trade deadline the busiest one in years, and lots of bargains will be available. A ~3mil cap cushion will put us in good shape to add a value guy with term remaining from a team worried about getting poached by Vegas.

Billy Pilgrim:

Pick up Frank Corrado when Toronto puts him on waivers.


I think if the Canucks are to go for a UFA forward to supplement this roster at this point, they’ve really got to pick a relatively young player who might be able to contribute in case of injury and still has some upside potential.

Looking at Capfriendly’s list of UFA forwards remaining, there are only three remaining players under the age of 28 who played 20 or more NHL games last year: Corban Knight, Gabriel Bourque and, yes, Cody Hodgson.

I’d be interested to see the Canucks take a flyer on Gabriel Bourque. He’s had promising flashes with Nashville and seems capable of playing a bottom-6 role while keeping his head above water possession-wise. At a league min. and/or on two-way contract, the 25-year old could provide some NHL-quality depth while adding some experience to a crew in Utica that has experienced a significant loss of veteran players this offseason.


I think we should sign. Johnny gaudreau and frank corrado

Please keep Alexandre edler he is a good player

Please who else isn’t signed with the Vancouver Canucks players that aren’t signed please sign we need more players and a new coach

Maybe I should coach them my friend he said that he will my name in for the Vancouver Canucks ,

  • FishWhiskey

    You rank them by ceiling, potential for success, size and positional importance:

    starting goaltender
    top pairing defencemen
    top line centre
    top line winger
    second pairing defencemen
    second line centre
    second line winger
    back-up goaltender
    third pairing defencemen
    third line centre
    third line winger
    fourth line centre
    fourthline winger

    That gives me a top ten ranking of:


    • FishWhiskey

      froger84 is on to something. But I would add replacement value to the mix. So I would adjust the positional rankings as follows:

      Tier 1 prospects:
      Top pairing D, 1st line C, 1st line W, starting goalie

      Tier 2:
      2nd line C, 2nd pairing D, 2nd line W,

      Tier 3:
      3rd line C, 3rd pair D, 3rd line W.

      Tier 4:
      Anyone else that might play in NHL – not really much of a prospect.

      So, I would go with:
      Tier 1:
      Juolevi, Boeser, Demko

      Tier 2:
      Tryamkin, Olson, Subban, Brisebois, Rodin

      Tier 3:
      Zhukenov, Cassels, Gaunce, Pedan, Stecher, Candella, Neill, Jasek

      Tier 4:

      The lack of Tier 1/2 centres on this list is troubling….

  • FishWhiskey

    The Canucks developmental pipeline seems strong on defensemen and goalies, but weak on forwards with obvious first-line potential. I don’t see where the next offensive star is going to come from.

    • detox

      with dmen and goalies often taking longer to develop, I am glad JB added these players first.

      yes, scoring needs to be addressed, but some patience is needed.

      headed in the right direction. Hopefully Boeser will make an impact.

      • SJ

        Hopefully Boeser will make an impact.

        I’m not asking who will make an impact. I’m asking who will be the next Sedin, Naslund, Linden, or Bure. I don’t see anyone in the pipeline who comes close to that kind of potential.

        A legacy, I guess, of having few early draft picks over the last ten years.

        • Whackanuck

          High, high expectations Killer. Five of the best Canucks in 45 years.

          Boeser probably has first line upside. Horvat and Virtanen second line and maybe Baertschi. That leaves the Sedins to be replaced in the top 6 and yes, that’s a tall and urgent order. Consider though, the prospects in Tort’s year and see the progress.

          • detox

            High, high expectations Killer. Five of the best Canucks in 45 years.

            Five of the best over the last 28 years. And I did say “even come close to the potential”, meaning I’m just looking for someone that has a plausible chance at becoming a true star. I’m not asking for guarantees.

            It’s not there, and the Canucks have not had such a prospect for many years. I have nothing against Boeser, but right now he does not appear to be the guy.

            But even lowering our sights, I see no clear and obvious first-line talent in the development pool.

  • detox

    The players that aren’t signed with the Vancouver Canucks you better sign now before hockey starts,

    Matt bartkowski are you going to sign ?

    Frank corrado are you going to sign with the Vancouver Canucks?

    Anybody else you isn’t signed like Johnny gaudreau better sigh with the Vancouver Canucks?

  • Bob Long

    I arbitrarily made my cut-off for prospects to be players who have 0 NHL games experience: accordingly, Anton Rodin and Tom Nilsson qualified for consideration, while Gaunce and Virtanen did not. This left me with 27 players to choose from: 15 signed, 12 unsigned.

    Instead of a top-10, I’ll go with a top-5 forwards and top-5 dmen. For goalies, Demko is clearly better than Garteig.

    1. Boeser;
    2. Rodin;
    3. Zhukenov;
    4. Carcone;
    5. Stukel.

    1. Juolevi;
    2. Subban;
    3. Brisebois;
    4. Olson;
    5. Neill.

  • FishWhiskey

    I’d say:

    Top tier, can’t miss prospects
    1. Juolevi
    2. Boeser
    3. Demko

    Clearly NHL talent, but not clearly stars
    4. Rodin
    5. Subban
    6. Gaunce
    7. Tryamkin

    Questionable whether they will be NHL players, but potential ceilings are as NHL regulars
    8. Zhukenov
    9. Pedan
    10. Olson
    11. Stecher
    12. Neill
    13. Brisebois
    14. Candella

    Long shots to stick long term in the NHL at any capacity
    15. Gaudette
    16. Grenier
    17. Jasek
    18. Garteig
    19. Lockwood
    20. Cassels

  • Bob Long

    No Canucks prospect is getting the Calder. Not because they don’t deserve it, but they’ll never get the eastern media exposure to get the votes. Juolevi could have a +/- of +35 and Matthews would still get it by not falling down every game.

    Having said that the prospect ranking from ESPN is probably not far off – I’d say top 1/3 for sure, and depending on how players like Subban progress in Utica it could move up fast.

  • Bob Long

    Please sign Matt bartkowski and Johnny gaudreau and frank corrado?

    For the Vancouver Canucks please sign if your not signed we need more players who want to play for Vancouver,