Do you think Quinn will join the team late in the year like Brock did or will he join the team next season?
— Laura 🏒💚💙 (@canucks181) January 28, 2019
My guess would be that he would join the team after his season with Michigan is over. It’s become so common with big-name prospects from the NCAA that it feels like standard practice now. It’s a good way to get the signing over with quickly and generate some interest in the team’s remaining home games if they’re out of the playoff picture. What’s more interesting to me is the question of whether or not he’ll play enough games to require protection in the next expansion draft.
Think the Canucks could/should work a deal around Tanev for Dermott?
— justexhausted (@nomadenhaft) January 28, 2019
A year or two ago, absolutely. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was offered by the leafs in negotiations a couple of years ago, but the Canucks turned it down wanting more. It’s funny how quickly things change. Tanev’s value has plummeted so much over the past year or so that the Leafs giving up Dermott for him would probably be considered an overpayment by much of the league.
This question was asked before news of the Jaze Muzzin trade broke, but I think that move makes it less likely the Leafs make an offer on any of the defenders that might be available at the deadline.
In order to have dman from Utica are the Canucks in a position to move a dman or two
— Joe Salas (@Ic3D3mon) January 28, 2019
The Canucks could very easily move out any of Derrick Pouliot, Erik Gudbranson, or Alex Biega and not be any worse off on the back end than they are right now. The question is whether or not there’s a market for any of those players. Gudbranson might still hold a lot of value from the right team, but I don’t really see Pouliot or Biega generating a lot of interest.
The Canucks are in a tough position right now when it comes to fixing their defense. They have some intriguing prospects, but other than Quinn Hughes they don’t have anyone coming who’s guaranteed to make an impact, and this year’s free agent crop boasts a lot of big-name defensemen but hardly any depth. It’s understandable if they don’t really want to move on from anyone in their top four, but the issues that currently plague the Canucks’ defense aren’t likely to get any better as Edler and Tanev get older. They aren’t in an ideal position to trade a defender, but if they’re serious about building for the future they’ll need to increase the number of young assets in their system and the only way to do that is to make a deal
What will it take for Benning to move sutter granlund gudbranson ?
— Danno (@8danno4) January 27, 2019
I’ll start by saying that I don’t think there’s much of a market of Markus Granlund, so I wouldn’t get your hopes up on that front.
The emergence of Adam Gaudette is likely to make them feel more comfortable moving on from Brandon Sutter than they’ve ever been at any point over the past couple of years, but I feel confident saying they’re going to wait until after July 1 when his limited NTC kicks in to make a deal. They may wait until next year’s deadline to make sure they’re comfortable with their centre depth, but I think a trade is likely at this point unless something changes.
As far as what it would take for them to trade Erik Gudbranson? I have no idea. They didn’t pull the trigger at last year’s deadline and I highly doubt his trade value has increased at all since he signed his three-year extension.
From watching his work at the All-Star game… Do you think Bieksa has a potential future in broadcasting/commentating?
— Canuck_2441 (@Canuck_2441) January 27, 2019
I’ve wanted Kevin Bieksa to pursue a media career for years now. I didn’t actually watch the ASG this year, but I don’t need to to know that he did an excellent job. Very few players are as genuinely sharp and funny as Kevin Bieksa, and it just seems like a natural progression for him to transition into hockey commentary, either in the booth as a colour commentator, or on the panel between periods.
Bieksa was my favourite Canuck to follow over the course of the Sedin era from a personality standpoint, so I’d be happy to see him return to the game after retirement in whatever capacity he wants, but I hope for the sake of my own entertainment that he decides to become an analyst.
In a hypothetical situation where Edler is traded at the deadline and the Canucks only get picks/prospects (nothing immediately restorable)
Would you sign a LHD to play above in house prospects, if so who would you target?
— Van Prospects (@VanProspecttalk) January 27, 2019
The free agent crop of defensemen is surprisingly thin on the left side this year. There’s Jake Gardiner, who’s still relatively young and produces the type of offense from the back end that will probably make him worth whatever contract he signs this summer, but I’m not sure he’s a clear fit for a team at this stage of their life cycle. I wouldn’t be opposed to them signing a bottom-four guy to a short-term deal for the right price, but there isn’t really a name that jumps out. Braydon Coburn, Ben Chiarot, or Jordie Benn could all play spot duty while the team figures out better long-term options, but it depends on what the money and term would look like. If anyone is asking for more then two years, I’d pass.
I think the real opportunity to move someone out is on the right side, where there are a few more names available this summer. That’s the route I’d go given how rare that is and how difficult it can be to find right-handed defenders.
Any interest by the canucks to sign Matt Brassard looks like a beauty D man in the O. 6,3” right shot any appetite there?
— Belaclava Boris 🇷🇺 (@KtlieverseKelly) January 28, 2019
I’m not convinced there’s a lot there, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they signed him jut to shore up prospect depth on the right side. Then again, I also wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if they moved on, either. The team hasn’t exactly had the best track record picking defensemen outside the first round, and Matt Brassard hasn’t done quite enough to prove he’s more deserving of a contract than, say, Carl Neill and Tate Olson were at the end of their junior careers. It depends on whether or not the team still sees something there. Looking at the numbers, it really looks like it could go either way, but obviously the team’s staff has had many more chances to see him play than I have.
Where do you think the Canucks prospect pipeline ranks in the league when you only count defenceman?
— Thomas P. Shipley (@thinkboatley) January 28, 2019
I’d put them somewhere just outside the top 5, with the Hurricanes, Blackhawks, Islanders, Leafs, and Golden Knights in the conversation as teams with pipelines that are as good or better. You could make the case that a team like San Jose, Ottawa, or Montreal might have better depth, but they don’t come close in terms of talent so it’s kind of a moot point. Sure, Canucks don’t exactly have a ton of depth at the position, but then again, most teams don’t have a prospect as good as Quinn Hughes.
I’m generally not a huge fan of ranking prospect pools as a whole because it’s too volatile and fans have a tendency to put too much value into a top 5 ranking. Truly elite prospects are basically only eligible for a year or two before they make the NHL, so these lists actually have the effect of punishing the teams that draft the best players. For example, this exercise rewards the Canucks for picking Olli Juolevi over someone like Mikhail Sergachev or Charlie McAvoy instead of rewarding the teams who picked a player who’s already in the NHL. To me, it’s a problem that “the Canucks have one of the league’s best prospects pools at defense” and “the Canucks are among the worst teams in the NHL in long-term outlook on defense” are equally true statements.
Regardless, Quinn Hughes still puts them near the top of the list. He’s just that good. Without him, they’d be in the middle of the pack at best; but that’s the difference one talent can make.