The Canucks announced another round of cuts to their training camp roster this afternoon. Ten players are in the crosshairs, and each is expected to report to the Utica Comets training camp.
— J.D. Burke (@JDylanBurke) September 23, 2017
Today’s victims of the numbers game include Evan McEneny, Jordan Subban, Zack MacEwan, Michael Carcone, Yan-Pavel LaPlante, Griffen Molino, Ashton Sautner, Alexis D’Aoust, Aaron Irving and Brett McKenzie.
Among the ten players going to Utica, only McEneny will have to clear waivers for the purpose of reassignment. And there’s no guarantee he’ll make it through.
A team like the Colorado Avalanche, for example, are rebuilding, only have four defencemen on NHL contracts and need players that are, at the very least, on the cusp of NHL readiness. Someone like McEneny might be appealing, especially given where they are in their development.
Canucks Army 2017 Pre-Season Prospect Rankings #14: Evan McEneny https://t.co/4149B66iay
— CanucksArmy (@CanucksArmy) August 31, 2017
The waiver situation might actually explain why the Canucks have sent McEneny down so early in the process. McEneny hasn’t had a great camp, but he’s looked fine by all accounts, and on the sole basis of merit, deserves to be around a bit longer — certainly longer than Guillaume Brisebois. It’s possible the Canucks think that by sending McEneny down early enough in the process, he’ll get lost in the sea of waiver wire fodder and that he won’t have the opportunity to impress teams further in camp.
Other than McEneny, there isn’t a lot going on in this group. Some will find it disappointing that Jordan Subban didn’t get an extended look, but the simple fact is that he reaffirmed the Canucks every concern about his ability to play defence at the NHL level — he’s just not ready.
That Griffen Molino didn’t last to the bitter end might be a surprise to some, given he played five games with the Canucks to finish last season. Like Subban, though, Molino just didn’t show anywhere near enough to indicate he’s an NHL ready player. Molino has NHL speed but doesn’t quite know how to use it yet. Unlike Subban, I could see Molino getting a call-up at some point this season. Injuries are an inevitability with this team, it seems, and he’s not terribly far off from being a passable option on a team’s fourth line.
The Canucks play next on Thursday night against the Calgary Flames.
As it turns out, McEneny doesn’t require passing through waivers to make it to the Utica Comets. Ryan Biech does an excellent job of outlining why, in this article.
— Ryan Biech (@ryanbiech) September 24, 2017