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Photo Credit: NHL.com

Canucks acquire G Marek Mazanec from Rangers for 2020 7th round pick

Appears that the Canucks have addressed their goaltending depth issues this morning after it was announced that they have sent a 2020 7th round pick to the New York Rangers for Marek Mazanec

At this moment, there is no word if it was the own Canucks 7th round pick or the pick acquired from the Anaheim Ducks in the deal that saw Michael Del Zotto head to California.

Mazanec is 7-8-4 with the Hartford Wolf Pack in the AHL and has posted a 3.01 GAA and 0.903 SV%. He is also a pending UFA that is making $650,000 this season.

The Czech netminder has appeared in 31 NHL games, all with the Nashville Predators between 2013-14 and 2016-17.

It seems pretty clear that the Canucks were hoping that Philadelphia would place Mike McKenna on waivers in the past few weeks but the Flyers were exhausting on every option available to them to avoid having to do so. Unfortunately, the team reached a breaking point last night with Michael DiPietro getting the start and the team playing horribly in front of him.

If Markstrom is deemed healthy enough to play, then DiPietro will be automatically re-assigned to the OHL because the organization now has two healthy goalies. If Markstrom isn’t good to go tomorrow against the Ducks, then DiPietro and Mazanec will have to hold down the fort until the Canucks goaltenders get healthy.

Once Markstrom and Thatcher Demko are healthy again, Mazanec will find his way to Utica. (he has 20 days left in his waiver exemption)

The organization was making smart moves in terms of turning their assets into futures but the injury bug came back and combined with losing McKenna on waivers, resulted in them being a real pickle.

There should’ve been a move down much sooner but at the very least they come out slightly ahead with the acquisition of a 2019 6th round pick for Anders Nilsson and then only giving up a 7th round pick for Mazanec. Although the pick value difference is negligible at that point, so they really aren’t further ahead than where they were in early January other than getting Demko up and onto the NHL roster.

        • Killer Marmot

          I didn’t mind the idea of DiPietro as back-up goalie for a while. It was bad luck that Markstrom suffered an injury just before playing the Sharks. A easier introduction to the league would have been preferable.

          • Dirk22

            Except Dipietro wasn’t ‘thrust’ into the backup role. This isn’t the UBC goalie getting a callup because someone can’t get there on time. This is 5+ weeks of not finding the most basic of solutions – as evidenced by this trade.

          • Bobaner

            I agree, people are always clamoring about giving young players a chance. I get that the goalie position is different but the fans, the organization and the player got a chance to see where he’s at against NHL competition. It’s only too bad the team sucked in front of him.

      • Me

        He’d have complained about how stupid the GM was before remembering it was him.

        Seriously, J”DF”B, why don’t you buy the team? Clearly you’re a multi-billionaire because you have such perfect hindsight you must have invested in every boom and shorted every bust for the last 20 years or so.

        If ever you’d actually pointed out a problem BEFORE it became a problem, maybe some of us would actually think you were something other than a complaining blowhard.

    • canuckfan

      So many people wanting to give away the farm to get a goalie who will not be any part of the future except to sit on the bench.
      Sometimes poop happens and you deal with it. If Markstrom was in net last night he would have likely seen the same result as would have anyone else in our system as well as Nilsson who was traded away. Markstrom has been able to have people forget how bad the team has been playing with his great goal tending.
      I am glad we found someone who will play the role until the end of the year. It will be during the off season where we will address the depth at the goal position.
      If the team drops in the standings not the end of the world. Last night was a chance to give Markstrom a break it is the LA and Ducks games that we need points from. It is nice to see some of the young players get a look. The injuries have hurt the chances of getting points, it is about next year now whether we make the playoffs or not. In the off season we can sign more than one goalie to address the depth, Markstrom and Demko are one and two can’t afford to have an expensive 3, 4, 5 and 6.

    • Big question is why didn’t Benning sign Leighton to a two-way to fix the NHL crease problem and shift the problem to Utica? Leighton is long in the tooth but at least had some NHL experience vs. DiPietro. I would imagine it’s easier to find a stopgap AHL goaltender than an NHL goaltender.

      • MattyT

        Couldn’t agree more. This loser troll ‘Bud’ has been stinking up the joint for three years now and needs to be punted as Jackson suggested over a year ago.

        His trolling for attention is getting more absurd every day as more commenters either rip into or ignore his ridiculous obnoxious ramblings – time to cut this cancer out and get the forum healthy again. Simplez.

    • Mc.Rib

      RDS Montreal is reporting the Canucks and Canadiens have a trade in place, goalie Cayden Primeau foward Michael Chaput will be traded to the Canucks for a 2019 2nd and a 2012 4th.

  • wojohowitz

    Chuck Fletcher is sending a message to his fanbase that he will show no mercy in his dealings although it appears vindictive from the wet coast as he demotes Brian Elliott for a `conditioning` stint rather than demote and waive McKenna. He needs the spin after doing next to nothing in Minnesota for eight years.

    • Jim "Dumpster Fire" Benning

      Retaining a 35 year old career AHL’er who has played on like 22 pro teams in his career purely to spite others doesn’t exactly scream to important decision making does it?

      • wojohowitz

        My point being that Benning got caught up in something totally unexpected. He knew he could not waive Nilsson because he would lose him so instead he assumed he could waive McKenna but was caught unaware by Fletcher who was desperate for a goalie having used seven so far this season and finally got lucky with 20 year old rookie Carter Hart. Now that Benning has acquired a goalie look for McKenna to go on waivers as soon as next week. Is it something personal between Benning and Fletcher?

        • DJ_44

          …. waive McKenna but was caught unaware by Fletcher who was desperate for a goalie

          Benning was not caught unaware when he waived McKenna. McKenna was place on waivers at noon, Neuverth was injured seven hours (or whatever the timing was) after McKenna was waived (i.e. that night). It was fortunate for Philly McKenna was available; not so much for the Canucks.

          The issues in not really an issue. The Canucks management opted to risk manage the situation, with calling up DiPietro as a backup being a viable option. That fact that Demko was injured in warm-ups was another piece of bad luck.

          The worst case scenario materialized last night, where DiPietro had to start against the Sharks. The fact hat the team in front of him did not show up and were actually throwing pucks in there own net was the incredibly disappointing bit. DiPietro is no worse for the experience. An AHL goalie signed by the Canucks would have faired no better.

          I actually had no problem in how the Canucks have handled the situation. The whole issue that started the ball rollling was getting Demko up with the big club. That was achieved.

    • DJ_44

      I think they want a better goaltender in Utica this season, and they must feel that Mazanec is better than Leighton. Leighton did not look terrible is last two games this past weekend, but before that …. it was not pretty.

      Next season, DiPietro will be in net for Utica. If Bachman returns, he will back up, or be sent to Kalamzoo in favour of another goalie.

  • Powpow

    “Once Markstrom and Thatcher Demko are healthy again, Mazanec will find his way onto waivers and head down to Utica.”

    Wouldn’t he have to play 10 games or 30 days on the roster to require waivers?

  • Freud

    Simply put, this is a play from page one of the Chiarelli GM handbook.

    If Edmonton handled their goalies this way and then gave up a pick in the end, the dim would be pointing fingers and laughing.

    I’m just impressed Jimbo didn’t give up a 3rd rounder to get Nilsson back.

      • We’re at 46 contracts, we could have signed Leighton on for the rest of the season and still have 3 contract spots to spare for college UFA’s or Hughes. Mazanec will still use up a contract spot anyways. Criticism of Benning for not solving the goaltender problem as soon as they lost McKenna is valid.

        • Bud Poile

          Sure,criticism is valid but we are not privy to what actually happens or is in the works.
          Demko will be back,DiPietro will go back to junior,Leighton or Mazanek will backup in the AHL.
          DiPietro just got a taste of the work he has to do and Markstrom and Edler look a lot better today than three days ago.
          It’s a wake up call for the team,mgmt. and the fans so not all negative from my viewpoint.

          • I agree on the wake-up call. I was just commenting that signing Leighton wouldn’t have been so bad to call it a wasted NHL contract. He’s about 8 years past his prime but he’d only be on the books for another 4-5 months and he’d be a better choice than an emergency junior call-up.

  • Fred-65

    Does any obe recall this is professional hockey. People/fans pay to watch this. Yet they ice an amateur goalie. This started months ago when Backman was injured, Kulbakov was called up from Kalamazoo but there was no replacement or plan to cover this problem. This is has been sitting in JBs the lap for months. It’s not just DiPietro who’s the amateurs in the Vcr ranks, as usual it strats at the top

    • #29JackMack

      Wow, amazing how many people think this is a big deal. You trade a poor backup for a 6th round pick, you ultimately have to give up a 7th rounder for likely a similarly week goalie and people freak out??? I’m sure young Mikey Di Pietro will manage to move past this disaster, I’ll bet he even had a bit of fun last night. Reasonable gamble by Benning and ZERO damage. The way the Canucks are starting games these days, Terry Sawchuk wouldn’t have bailed them out last night..don’t sweat the small things people.

    • Killer Marmot

      By definition, an NHL goalie is not amateur. But when your top three goalies are all injured, things can get a little weird. It happens occasionally to every club.

      But Benning did try to address this on January 2 when he traded for McKenna as part of a five-piece deal. Thus Benning has not been sitting on this for months”.

      • Fred-65

        Hey Philly pulled one over on them. Pull on your big boys pants and address the problem, that’s what Philly did. We don’t want pity we want professionalism and a solution not whining. You don’t throw a tantrum you find a solution just like any other profession. He decided to sit and wait. Heck it was mid December when Backman’s season ended.Since they brought up Kulbakov from Kalamazoo they’ve had to replacement in the ECHL. If they wanted an insurance policy at the start of the season in the ECHL how come they chnaged their mind ….. there’s still no goalie in Kalamazoo Canuck property. Either they want a ECHL goalie or they don’t …. fuzzy thinking

  • 51Geezer

    The criticism is this, I think: Benning failed to ensure adequate depth in goal.
    Isn’t this criticism valid only if McKenna, Leighton or someone else played last night and allowed no more than one goal?

  • Kanuckhotep

    I just wish Mr. Benning had a crystal ball then he could have foreseen all the injuries happening to his goaltenders on the big club and on the farm. Don’t know what else he is suppose to do with this predicament. Mikey will get his chance again when he is ready but the kid isn’t there yet.

    • No, Benning was passive and let one of his prospects get obliterated before doing something which was bad asset management and worse prospect development. He could have signed Leighton to a two-way contract rather than a PTO or tried to acquire a guy like Mazanec as soon as McKenna was waived. It’s frustrating to see Benning make a bad judgment call and let DiPietro suffer for bad decision-making.

      • #29JackMack

        ya, real “frustrating” Forever 1915. Poor suffering Di Pietro, having to have a dream come true, which he stated in his interview FIVE TIMES after the game. Definitely a slow news day!

      • DJ_44

        It is not bad asset management. Nor is it bad prospect development. All fans felt bad that Dipeitro was forced in during the Sharks game coupled with the larger disappointed with the terrible effort from, well, everyone on the ice except DiPietro and MacEwen.

        If the Canucks lost 3-2, DiPetro played well (and I thought he did not play poorly, just a combination of terrible puck luck, a team that played terrible in front of him) then everyone would have said he should start the season in Vancouver next year.

        But calling it “bad asset management” is just ignorant of the facts. The Canucks tried to get through until an NHL goalie was waived. Demko got hurt in warm-ups. You are down to Markstorm, with DiPietro being the obvious and valid solution to back him up (the calls that no one was available to back up Markstrom in Philly are just stupid — since only teams that carry three goalies on the roster could cover such situation).

        I suspect the reason they just did not sign Leighton was because they do not see Leighton as goalie they want for the season in Utica. They want to find a better option for Utica, either on waivers (preferably) or via trade.

        Like really, they managed the risk, with the worse case scenario (i.e. both Markstrom and Demko injuried) happening last night. They only now have to truly address the situation because they need someone to back up DiPietro (or form DiPietro to back up) if Markstrom AND Demko cannot play on Wednesday.

        The old saying …. if you got time, use it. Now there hand was well and truly forced, and it cost them a seventh, but hopefully will provided solid goaltending in Utica for the rest of the season.

  • liqueur des fenetres

    What’s the plan in goal anyway? Or has it changed again?

    As recently as about a month ago the window lickers were still clamoring for Bobrovsky this offseason. So why not deal Markstrom once he got on his hot streak for a backup and prospect to a team that’s looking to go deep this post season? Is Marky now suddenly in the team’s long term plans?

    • Killer Marmot

      Management doesn’t usually announce specific plans such as that, so I don’t know why you would even ask.

      If I had to guess, however it would be “Markstrom-Demko until the end of 2020, with DiPietro in Utica next year as the first call-up. After that, we’ll see.”

  • rediiis

    It was for a 7th round draft pick (which the Canucks have 2 in 2020). I do not understand the wasted asset analysis from some posters. Geez, in the 7th round you get your choice of 125 pound forwards or defensemen that can’t skate. Mazanec has some tools and could become an asset with some solid coaching. He could be the next Markstrom.