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Reacting to the Filip Hronek extension and Jake Guentzel rumours: Canucks Conversation

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Photo credit:Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
Clarke Corsan
24 days ago
On today’s emergency episode of Canucks Conversation, David Quadrelli and Harman Dayal discussed two major topics: Filip Hronek’s new contract with the Vancouver Canucks and the swirling rumours about Jake Guentzel.
 
Quads and Harm first tackled the significant news of Filip Hronek signing an eight-year contract extension with the Canucks, carrying an average annual value (AAV) of $7.25 million. The guys shared their initial reactions and insights into this long-term commitment.
“I can live with this cap hit,” said Harm. “It came in a little bit lower than a lot of us had anticipated- that doesn’t mean it’s cheap, it’s still an expensive figure. 8 years is also probably a year or two longer than you’d be hoping for, but the contract is palatable. It’s not an egregious overpayment which a lot of us were worried about when discussing the potential of a long-term Hronek deal, so it’s something you can live with for a player who’s a perfect fit for Quinn Hughes.”
“I’ve been saying for the past couple weeks that I think a lot of the contracts that are going to be signed on July 1st, especially among right-handed defencemen, are going to surprise a lot of people,” Quads explained. “Let’s not forget what Erik Gudbransen or Luke Schenn got, I’m not saying that’s what the Canucks are comparing to but ultimately this is a right-shot defenceman we know is capable of playing those top-pair minutes. He’s a number 2 or 3 guy, not a true number 1, but you have Quinn Hughes’ partner locked up for 8 years. Right now this number looks good, going forward it’s only going to look better.”
Quads underscored the value of securing a reliable right-shot defenceman capable of playing top-pair minutes.
“They went out and traded for this guy, this was their target, it would’ve been a bad look if they lost and had to replace him,” Quads continued. “This isn’t a phenomenal contract, it’s a good deal for the team and moving forward it has the potential to be a really good deal when you look around the rest of the league and what’s being signed. It’s important to get this out of the way early, it’s the first domino to fall. It gives you a ton of clarity heading into July 1st, and it’s not a coincidence that a report came out today about the Canucks being expected to heavily pursue Jake Guentzel who is slated to hit free agency.”
With Hronek’s contract sorted, attention turns to the rumoured pursuit of Jake Guentzel, a high-profile winger expected to hit free agency.
“[The Canucks] have just over 19 million in cap space to address the rest of their offseason needs,” Harm started. “They should be in on Jake Guentzel if the opportunity presents itself; he’s the perfect fit to play with Elias Pettersson. In the past, the question mark was can Guentzel produce away from Sidney Crosby? He proved that with conviction during his run with the Hurricanes during the regular season and playoffs combined producing at over a point per game clip. He was a great fit with Sebastian Aho who plays a pretty similar style to Pettersson; neither of them are the biggest or fastest but they have elite IQ, quality two-way pivots and on overall ability and talent I think they’re neck and neck. Guentzel being a perfect fit with Aho affirmed in my mind how well he’d mesh with Pettersson. The Canucks can afford to make the big splash and go for a Jake Guentzel at a 9 million cap hit or whatever it’s going to take, but now that you’ve signed Hronek you can’t go after Guentzel and also re-sign Zadorov. The Canucks would have to ship out salary if they want both, which I don’t think they need to bring Zadorov back. Would it be nice? Absolutely, but there are ways to replace him… This team needs an elite winger. It would be such a boon for this organization to add a piece like Guentzel. You can find other defencemen to fill Zadorov’s departure. You may not find the perfect stylistic fit, but you can find number 4 or 5 defencemen with abundance and this management group has done that many times; you can’t do that with an elite winger.”
You can watch the full emergency episode below!

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