Photo Credit: Matthew Henderson

WWYDW: The Other Shoe Finally Drops

After weeks of speculation that the Canucks priority had shifted with Erik Gudbranson to a point where they’d rather re-sign the pending unrestricted free agent defenceman, the deal finally came together.

Yesterday morning, the Canucks signed Gudbranson to a three-year contract valued at $12-million, for an AAV of $4-million (that’s his cap hit). The deal is somewhat frontloaded, and by the final year of Gudbranson’s contract, his actual salary drops to about $3-million.

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I’d think that at this stage you’re all aware of how most of the staff at CanucksArmy feels about the Gudbranson extension. Clearly, it doesn’t matter what we think though. What about you? What’s your take on the Gudbranson contract?

I want to hear whether you are in favour of the contract or not, and why. Just a simple yes or no and an explanation.

Last week I asked: What would you do if you were in Canucks general manager Jim Benning’s shoes? Is there anything you would do to shake things up? Basically, what type of hockey trade would you make with this roster. Try and steer clear of the obvious sell-off deals, too — get creative!


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I take it everyone should be available outside Brock and Bo, the NMCs, and Benning favourites Sutter, Tanev, Stecher, and JV. Outside the UFA, the only hockey trades to make are with Hutton and Baertschi. That said, there is probable a secondary market for Biega and Dowd. I do think JB will be active and the Nucks will have a few more draft picks for sure.


In 2-3 years time, the Canuck top four figures tentatively to be Juolevi, Tanev, Stecher, and whomever the Canucks draft in the first round this year. (I’m assuming Benning takes a d-man who develops into a solid NHLer.)

Hutton doesn’t really figure to be part of that top group. He seems to have already reached his plateau, which is a useful depth player who can potentially fill in on the top four when injuries arise. Considering where the Canucks are in their rebuild, I wouldn’t hold on to a player like that. As many writers on this site have said, Canuck management needs to roll the dice on draft picks that might turn into impact players. They aren’t going to the playoffs this year, so they don’t need insurance players like Hutton.

I would also trade Vanek and Gudbranson for best offer. Not a “creative” approach, but it’s what the Canucks need to do right now. Stockpile draft picks and hope to hit a home run, or at least a double.

I would therefore try to move Hutton,

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Benning should be entertaining offers on almost every player on the team.

Edler’s been playing very well lately and I have a hard time believing a contending team wouldn’t pay a lot to add him, especially if the Canucks retain a bit of salary. I also have a hard time believing Edler wouldn’t waive his NTC if it meant a chance at a Stanley Cup, which he has to know he isn’t getting again in Vancouver. If you can get a 1st round pick or a quality prospect and a depth pick for him, make that move.

Likewise, Tanev could net a fine return and everyone is looking to add a top-end right shot shutdown defenceman. The Lightning and Leafs in particular are teams that could benefit from Tanev and have the ability to pay. A 1st and a prospect is probably the starting point.

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If the Sedins are coming back next year and Petterson is likely coming over, I’d also take a serious look at moving Sutter, as another Gudbranson-like player whose reputation is probably higher than his play warrants. With Petterson and Gaudette both likely getting a crack at making the roster next season, and with Gaunce, Dowd, and Gagner filling in the depth centre roles, it makes sense to move Sutter if you can get a decent return. A middle-six centre in his prime, signed for several more seasons, with a reputation for defensive acumen and an ability to score goals should net the team a very decent return as well.


Would love to see vanek get traded and then resigned. I also think we need to trade Gudbranson, he’s horrible and has a decent trade value


i would trade linden for lou lamoriello when his contract expires with the leafs. lou would be great at contracts and he doesn’t suffer fools.


1) Vanek to Boston (with 50% retained salary) for Alex Khokhlachev.
2) Baertschi to Nashville for Dante Fabbro. Alternatively, for Alex Carrier and a high draft pick.
3) Goldobin for Max Domi.


No rush. Move Vanek and Gudbranson now, and a few more over the summer or even over the next 2-3 years. Some of the current players and prospects will be useful or starring members of a future Cup-contending team (maybe 3-4 years from now, hopefully). Many others can be moved for best available price between now and then. They don’t all have to be moved this month or this summer, but no good offer should be refused.

Projecting the gaps in that future roster is for fools, but I gladly rush in. Two top-six wingers and two top-pair defensemen need to be found via draft or trade over the next 3 years to make that 4th year a potentially very good one. Get as many picks as possible to help keep the bottom half of the roster young and cheap, and get some high picks to help fill the remaining (projected) gaps. The other spots, provisionally at least, have names penciled in.
A bit of a challenge; I hope Benning succeeds.

  • Vintage

    ? this is the best decision the Canucks organization could have made. Guddy will make every other player on the team play bigger and he will make sure they are accountable. The only thing standing in the way of him putting this team on his back now is Horvat. The post above about peak years shows us that it is too late for Horvat and this team. They need to trade Horvat this deadline for a kings ransom, give Guddy the C next season and signe a few stop gap players for the next couple seasons.