Back in June, it was reported that the Canucks were interested in acquiring Tyson Barrie from the Colorado Avalanche. The package Vancouver offered, according to Avanalche beat writer Adrian Dater, was Jake Virtanen and a 2020 first-round pick.
Of course, the Canucks and Avs didn’t strike a deal, and, a week later, Barrie was sent to the Toronto Maple Leafs along with Alexander Kerfoot in exchange for Nazem Kadri and Calle Rosen. The Canucks would dip into the free-agent market to add a right-handed defender, signing Tyler Myers to a multi-year contract and they moved their first-round pick to acquire J.T. Miller from the Lightning.
Barrie’s season in Toronto has been a complete disaster thus far. I mean, pretty much everything about the Leafs has been a disaster, but Barrie’s no goals and seven points and minus eleven rating through 23 games really sticks out. As a result, Barrie has found his name in trade rumours as the soon-to-be free agent might be looking for a fresh start.
On Saturday, right as the Leafs were getting smashed by the Pittsburgh Penguins on national television, Elliotte Friedman reported that the team had received trade offers on their struggling defenceman.
The other name that’s come up a lot this week is Tyson Barrie. There’s been a lot of chatter around him. He has not asked for a trade, however, I think there’s an understanding that so far it hasn’t worked, that this is a very important year for him because he’s a free agent, and I think we all recoginize how we would feel about that.
I’m hearing Toronto has recieved calls on him and so far they’ve rejected the idea and they don’t want to trade him. But there is interest and because Colorado is retaining half of his salary, he’s at $2.75 million. We’ll see where it goes over the next month, but I do think there’s a recognition that this can’t continue for him.
While Friedman says that the Leafs have declined everything thus far and that they don’t want to trade him right now, if things continue going south in Toronto, he’ll certainly be a player they consider moving prior to the trade deadline in order to recoup some assets. The Leafs might not have their first-round pick this summer because they dealt it (top-10 protected) to the Carolina Hurricanes to dump Patrick Marleau’s salary.
Circling back to the Canucks, Friedman was also on Sportsnet 590 in Toronto on Monday, suggesting that the Canucks not only tried to trade for him last summer, but they also planned to offer him a massive extension to keep him around long-term.
Two things come to mind for me: one that VAN couldn't give him 8 years bc he wasn't on their roster at the trade deadline and bc he wasn't eligible for an extension then. The other thing is that VAN has leaked higher numbers before signing players for less to look better.
— James (@Account4hockey) November 19, 2019
Knowing that the Canucks had interest in Barrie, not just as a player for this season, but, apparently as a long-term piece, I wonder if there’s still a fit here. It’s difficult to say if the Leafs are going to turn things around this season. The Atlantic Division is very competitive and the team appears to be completely out of wack with head coach Mike Babcock. If the new year rolls around and the Leafs haven’t pulled it together, we’ll most certainly be hearing Barrie’s name out there on the trade market.
I’m not sure if the Canucks can make it work with Barrie long-term given the fact they already handed out a big contract to Tyler Myers in the off-season, but he would give them another dynamic option on their blueline this season. Given his declined value from his poor start in Toronto and his small cap hit, there could be a fit here.
What do you think? Is Tyson Barrie still a fit in Vancouver? Or should Jim Benning look to upgrade in a different area?