How much do playoff performances affect Canucks free agents’ next deals?: Canucks Conversation

Photo credit:© Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports
Clarke Corsan
1 month ago
On today’s episode of Canucks Conversation, David Quadrelli and Harman Dayal discussed how the Canucks’ free agents’ playoff performances affect their upcoming deals, assuming they all get signed to a roster in the offseason.
Vancouver has a mitt-full of impact players on expiring contracts, including Elias Lindholm, Dakota Joshua, Filip Hronek, and Nikita Zadorov.
Lindholm wasn’t seen as a particularly important target to re-sign until recently, as he was underwhelming in the regular season and is expected to simply cost too much. However, his performance in the playoffs so far will have thrown a wrench into that discussion, as Lindholm has been one of the Canucks’ top forwards to this point in the postseason and will have commanded more consideration by management to be brought back. Ultimately, most signs point to Lindholm pricing out of Vancouver next year.
Joshua is a more realistic target, and his performance this postseason is fairly consistent to what we saw from him in the regular season. Hronek has had a somewhat underwhelming postseason so far, with 0 points and a -1 plus-minus through ten games, all while playing with Quinn Hughes. Zadorov on the other hand has exploded in the playoffs and particularly this series against Edmonton. He and Joshua are both physically imposing players which is always great to have come playoffs, the question becomes how much of this postseason run gets considered by management when it comes time to re-sign these guys?
“I love me some Zadorov, but you don’t want to make the mistake of signing your bottom-six guys to anchor deals,” said Quads. “It’s hard to say “find the next Zadorov” because they had to give up assets to get him, but it’s the same idea as why you wouldn’t sign Dakota Joshua to a 5×5 or whatever it is. You trust your pro scouting enough to go find you the next Dakota Joshua and you trust your coaching staff to morph them into that kind of player. It’ll be interesting with the cap going up. If I had to pick between Zadorov at 6×6 or Hronek at 8×8 I’d definitely think about it, but I’d probably lean toward the guy who is a top-four defenceman.”
“You always have to be careful with the recency bias of the playoffs,” agreed Harm. “He’s been a beast in the postseason, and if you could guarantee this is the type of player you’d get for the duration of that contract, absolutely. I wouldn’t mind a 6×6 for that. But you have to remember what he looked like in the regular season; he was fine, but he wasn’t a 6 million dollar defenseman, not by any stretch of the imagination. Post All-Star break to the end of the regular season, he was around 16-17 minutes a night, he was playing number 5 or 6 d-man minutes. Plus, he’s of course got the incentive of playing for his next contract in the middle of the playoffs with a lot of eyes on him; of course he’s elevating his game, he’s got all these eyes on him and is going the extra mile to make sure his presence is noticed all the time. We’ll get to the summer and 6×6 may not even be the price to get a Zadorov deal done, but if it is that high I don’t think the Canucks should be in that race.”
You can watch the full replay of today’s episode below:

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