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Photo Credit: SI.com

Report: Canucks to sign Gagner, Del Zotto, Burmistrov, and Nilsson

It’s not even 9am but it seems the Canucks will be very busy this morning.

Bob McKenzie from TSN has reported that the Canucks will likely be signing forwards Sam Gagner and Alex Burmistrov, defenceman Michael Del Zotto and goaltender Anders Nilsson.

All three are not surprising as there have been rumours of them all committing to the Canucks for a few days now.

Shortly after this, Elliotte Friedman from Sportsnet tweeted out their expected dollars and terms:

The Nilsson signing makes sense and was something that I talked about yesterday here.

Del Zotto appears to be a player that they would use in limited minutes at 5v5 play but use as a powerplay quarterback. In a vacuum, him being a target makes sense.

Gagner had a great season in Columbus as a fourth line centre who was used heavily on the powerplay.  He was effective in that role and helped make the Blue Jackets PP one of the best in the league. We will have to see how the Canucks use him, but there would likely be a bigger even strength role for Gagner.

For Burmistrov, he would be a skilled depth player who is looking for another chance to prove himself. The term will be short and the cap hit is very palatable.

These additions seem like good bets at this moment, and the terms/dollar values are not killer. The three skaters are good puck movers who can play with pace, which is something the Canucks have mentioned as being a target.

The only concern is pushing players like Brock Boeser, Jake Virtanen and Nikolay Goldobin to the AHL to start the year. This isn’t a bad thing, as they could benefit from an expanded role down there. Injuries happen and they will all likely get a chance at some point.

  • Killer Marrnot

    it looks like they only called it rebuilding because retooling was no longer testing well in the focus groups. Now Linden can tell everyone that they rebuilt the team over the summer. Retool 1 led to a 28th place finish, Retool 2 to a 29th, and Retool 3? It does look like they are following the Oiler and Leaf models, the wandering around in the wilderness part.

  • Mr. Puckluck

    I like Gagner over Megna and Brumisteov over Chaput. So those are good replacements. I do not like the idea of DelZotto over two years. I think one year is sufficient and could give one more year for Jolevie to develop. Nilsson is a great addition. He and Marky will be great together.

    • Doodly Doot

      I don’t mind Juolevi working his game in the AHL. No rush. Let these potential UFA signings carry water for the big club while the next gen get some seasoning. Big plus if the Comets are ripping it up in front of Dempko. Several of those kids will graduate with Dem up to the big club in the next couple years.

  • Tedchinook

    If this is all true it’s a solid group of signings. Nobody long term which will allow our prospects to develop properly without being rushed into the the League.

    • Overrated Gillis

      “We’ve added a big, strong 6’4″ centre in Shawn Matthias, who is excited to be here and will help this team now. And we believe in our talented group of prospects, including Bo Horvat, Nicklas Jensen, Frank Corrado, Dane Fox, Brendan Gaunce and Hunter Shinkaruk, who will be part of our short and long-term success. ” – Mike Gillis, 2014

  • Killer Marmot

    I understand Nilsson and Del Zotto. In fact, a goalie was essential.

    The signing of the two forwards would have made sense had
    the Canucks not resigned Megna and Chaput, who, given
    the number of promising young forwards deserving a chance at the
    big leagues, now look rather extraneous to needs.

  • wojohowitz

    They are going to start talking about making the playoffs again and the fanbase knows dribble when they see it. Aquilini stays focused on the bottom line – attendance and revenue.

    • DJ_44

      Have a goal of winning and making the playoffs should always be there. Whether they achieve it is another thing, but they should always attempt to remain competitive.

    • TD

      As a fan, I could live with a longer rebuild. That said, I can understand Aquilini be in worried about the bottom line. With the Canadian dollar in the dumps, the bottom line is in bad shape before a drop in attendance. I would be concerned about losing millions, wouldn’t you?

      • DJ_44

        I do not understand why the FA signings are not consistent with a rebuild. The NHL is not a development league. Rushing players to the NHL does not work. Let them play in the AHL until they a good enough to bang the door down. Most of the Canucks prospects fall into that category. Boeser can play in the NHL now, and will have that opportunity. Juolevi as well IF he shows really well in training camp (and that is only due to the fact it would be a waste for him to play in the OHL again).

  • Buula

    I like these signings.

    Keeps our young guys fighting for spots and keeps the others cooking in Utica instead of being pushed into NHL when they might not be fully ready.

  • Break The Canuck's Curse

    It’s good to see they are doing something and keeping their management feet moving. I remember all those years when the only thing coming out of the free agent market was a third line winger with a broken wheel

    So instead they are stuffing the bench, creating competition and letting the coach sort things out

  • Peachy

    Really good signings. They appear to show than GMJB knows that rebuilding phase will be another 2-3 years, and will keep the team interesting, and kids sheltered, in the meantime.

  • Whatthe...

    No problem with this and term makes sense on each signing. Also, each guy fills a void on the team. This also gives the Canucks some flexibility on the trade front.

    Most importantly, the young guys can get their reps in the AHL and hopefully make an AHL playoff run. Plus no reason they can’t fill in when injuries strike – if they are ready.

  • Canuck4Life20

    I’m not necessarily suggesting these as the line combinations, but this is the Canucks depth chart right now.

    FORWARDS:
    Daniel-Henrik-Granlund
    Baertschi-Horvat-Boeser
    Gagner-Sutter-Eriksson
    Virtanen-Gaunce-Boucher
    Dorsett
    Goldobin
    Burmistrov
    Chaput
    Megna
    Rodin

    DEFENCE:
    Edler-Stecher
    Tanev-Hutton
    Gudbranson-Del Zotto
    Pedan-Biega
    Holm
    Subban
    Juolevi

    GOALIES:
    Markstrom
    Nilsson

    • KingPavelBure

      How about starting season with this lineup,

      FORWARDS:
      Gagner-Horvat-Granlund
      Daniel-Henrik-Eriksson
      Baertschi-Sutter-Boucher
      Goldobin-Gaunce-Virtanin

      Boeser
      Burmistrov
      Chaput
      Megna
      Rodin

      DEFENCE:
      Edler-Stecher
      Tanev-Hutton
      Gudbranson-Del Zotto
      Pedan-Biega
      Holm
      Subban
      Juolevi

      GOALIES:
      Markstrom
      Nilsson

      I know putting Goldobin on the 4th line is a stretch but this team is starting to look like it has some options in depth. The youth movement is underway with competition from rookies to get into the lineup. With hopeful improvements from every player vs last year, I think we definately have a better team This year. There’s potential to not be bottom dwellers, so far so good Benning!

        • Gregthehockeynut

          Good line combo suggestions. The concern I do see though is the pk forward duty disrupting rolling four lines. Horvat-Baertschi Sutter-Granlund Chaput-Burmistrov on the pk?
          Baertschi-Horvat-Eriksson
          Daniel-Henrik-Gagner
          Granlund-Sutter-Boeser
          Chaput-Gaunce-Burmistrov
          Defence- mix and match based on results