It’s the final edition of WWYDW before the trade deadline, which means there’s only one question on everyone’s minds: What would you like to see the Canucks do at the deadline?
Last week I asked: Are you statisfied with the way the Canucks handled their goalie situation? How would you like to see them address the goaltending situation in Utica next season?
No, the goaltending situation could have been addressed earlier by signing Leighton to a two-way contract a week after McKenna was claimed or Demko was injured. McKenna and Leighton are almost the same age, have similar AHL/NHL stats (although Leighton has more NHL experience) and similar contracts. There was no need to wait for McKenna when Leighton was available the following week at no cost.
The goaltending situation will resolve itself for Utica next year. DiPietro will be able to play in the AHL and if Bachman is resigned, we’ll have a vet/rookie tandem both in Utica (Bachman, DiPietro) and Vancouver (Markstrom, Demko).
I would sign any goalies to the remaining 3 or 4 roster spots available and draft another 6 goalies this draft…this just can’t happen again, unless of course, the goalie gets a win and the hysteria crowd finds something else to complain about, like, they shouldn’t have 2 rookies, Zack and DiPietro, both getting debuts on the same game.
I think the whole situation was blown out of proportion. Benning obviously wanted McKenna for Utica not Leighton. Unfortunately McKenna wasn’t put back on waivers and DiPietro had to play one game. Manzanec plays backup for Markstrom til Demko is better. Then we have 3 goalies for Utica!! DiPietro had some NHL experience and spent time with an NHL goalie coach. As you can see. No goalie controversy.
1. With the Canucks having traded for Mazanec and having Leighton in Utica on a PTO, the situation is mostly now dealt with. I’ve been critical of the way it was handled but there really isn’t any issue going forward.
2. I’d like to see Leighton signed to an AHL deal for the balance of this season. He’s supplanted Kulbakov in net for the Comets and when Demko is ready to go again and Mazanec gets sent to Utica, the Comets could reassign Kulbakov to Kalamazoo, play Mazanec and Leighton in Utica and be back to their full slate of goalies, the same number they started the season with.
3. Although part of the question was what to do about next season, there isn’t really any issue about next season. It seems pretty much decided (and has seemed the plan since the summer of 2017) that in 2019-20 the Canucks will play Markstrom and Demko in Vancouver, Bachman and DiPietro in Utica and Kulbakov or some other youngster on an AHL contract in the ECHL.
Honestly, with the way the rest of the roster has been managed the past few years this feels like complaining about the in-flight wifi signal during a plane crash.