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Immodest Proposals: Trading Tanev For A Premium Young RHD

Several commenters on past editions of the Trade Market have mentioned their desire to see more actual trade proposals put up for discussion, and that’s the idea behind our newest column—Immodest Proposals.  

In each edition of Immodest Proposals, we’ll come up with a trade Concept—meaning the assets that the Canucks might be looking to give and receive in a potential deal—and the Rationale behind making said trade. We’ll then go around the league looking for potential trading partners that fit the bill, and throw it all together in a series of trade proposals that CanucksArmy readers can vote on.

Note: In the interest of fostering discussion, we’re going to aim to include a boatload of trade proposals in each edition of the column—but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the author thinks each proposal is a good one, or even a realistic one. That will be for the polls to decide!

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The Concept

This week’s Immodest Proposals are inspired by this week’s column about finding a defense partner for Quinn Hughes. While Chris Tanev makes for an excellent short-term solution, the Canucks might be interested in a pairing with more long-lasting potential.

With that in mind, we’re proposing a trade of Chris Tanev for essentially his own replacement. Tanev would be traded for a young, bluechip right-handed defenseman who is either just starting their NHL career or on the cusp of breaking into the league.

The targets for a trade of this nature would be contending teams that could benefit from upgrading a young talent to Tanev—which might hurt them in the long run, but would also give them a steady shutdown defender for at least two playoff runs. In order to further entice contenders, Vancouver could retain some salary on Tanev.

The proposed trade concept, therefore, would be:

Vancouver Trades Chris Tanev (25% Retained) For A Bluechip Right-Handed Defenseman Between The Ages Of 18 And 21


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The Rationale

Quinn Hughes is set to occupy the left side of the Vancouver blueline for years to come, but right-side defense remains the weakest component of the Canucks’ prospect cupboard. Jalen Chatfield is still rounding out his game in the AHL, and Jett Woo is at least a season away from even beginning his pro career—and after those two, it’s slim pickings.

Acquiring a premium RHD would allow the Canucks to shore up an organizational weakness and provide Hughes with a long-term potential partner—perhaps solidifying the team’s future top pairing. Even if the newly acquired defender doesn’t end up meshing with Hughes, it would still give the Canucks at least two young options in their top-four next year.

For his part, Tanev represents one of the franchise’s most valuable tradeable assets, and the Canucks might be best served by moving him before he ages out of effectiveness—provided they can get an adequate return. By trading him for a replacement player on an entry-level contract, any retention on Tanev’s contract will be offset.


The Proposals

For this exercise, we’re mainly looking at trading partners that are:

  1. Contending teams
  2. In need of Tanev’s services
  3. In possession of a bluechip RHD prospect


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To Toronto:

Chris Tanev (25% Retained)

To Vancouver:

Timothy Liljegren

Why not start with the most obvious proposal? This trade—or some variation of it—has been discussed since pretty much the day Liljegren was drafted, and it’s hard not to see the fit. Even after acquiring Jake Muzzin, the Leafs need major help on the right side, and Tanev already has established chemistry with Morgan Rielly. Liljegren is having a sophomore slump in the AHL, but he’s still just 19 years old and retains enormous value. 


To Nashville:

Chris Tanev (25% Retained)

To Vancouver:

Dante Fabbro

Fabbro has been connected to the Canucks in trade rumours before, but it’s hard to argue that Nashville needs an addition to their blueline, so Tanev might not be a fit. Still, Vancouver fans know firsthand that he represents a major upgrade on Yannick Weber and there have been mentions of a potential departure for PK Subban or Ryan Ellis in the summer—so an additional right-side defender may not be the worst idea. More retention may be required to seal this deal, but it’s not entirely implausible. 

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To Tampa Bay:

Chris Tanev (25% Retained)

To Vancouver:

Cal Foote

Tampa Bay is another team with an already-excellent blueline, but they’ve been specifically rumoured to be seeking a right-handed defenseman—and a retained Tanev could be the best option on the market. Foote has made a smooth transition to professional hockey with the Syracuse Crunch after spending the entirety of his junior career in Kelowna. He’s got the size and skill to matchup well with Quinn Hughes.

To Philadelphia:

Chris Tanev (25% Retained)

To Vancouver:

Philippe Myers

Myers just turned 22 a few days ago, but we won’t hold that against him. He’s still very much a bluechip prospect—and although the Flyers are far from a contender this season, it sounds as though they’re still set on retooling around Claude Giroux. Philadelphia could use an addition on the right side, especially if they move on from Radko Gudas at the deadline. In that case, they could probably afford to take Tanev without retention. 


To Colorado:

Chris Tanev (25% Retained)

To Vancouver:

Conor Timmins

Timmins projects to be the most polarizing inclusion. By the end of last season, he would have probably been considered the best prospect on this list—but then he suffered a concussion in the OHL playoffs and has yet to return to action. He’s getting nearer to a return, and there’s every chance that Colorado views him as untouchable—but they also have Cale Makar already on the right side, and that gives them options. Timmins would definitely be an acquisition in the “high risk, high reward” category, especially if he struggles after his return to the ice.


To Edmonton:

Chris Tanev (25% Retained)

To Vancouver:
Ethan Bear

2nd Round Pick

Edmonton was a difficult team to leave off this list, so we had to bend the rules to include them. The Oilers are committed to being a contender with Connor McDavid as their centerpiece—even if they’re not playing like it right now. Their right side is weak even when fully healthy, and if the Oilers can shed the salary of Cam Talbot or Andrej Sekera then they could definitely use Tanev’s services. Unfortunately, they don’t possess a true bluechip RHD prospect—so Bear plus a semi-significant add is the next best thing.

  • Puck Viking

    Hughes is a huge boom or bust. This guy could turn in to a bottom pairing PP specialist. We have to be realistic. He turns the puck over way too much. He might even need a year in Utica.

    I actually think the safest defensive prospect we have is Woo. He doesnt have the potential of Hughes but I dont see how this guy is not a lock to be a top 4 guy for us for the next 10 years.

  • El Kabong

    We need to trade Tanev for a young defenseman, we are rebuilding and Chris will never be part of the new core. Get a piece that’s already a couple years along in development would be a much better option going forward.