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Report: No talks between Canucks and Casey DeSmith; veteran G likely to hit free agency

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Photo credit:© Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports
Jagraj Lalli
1 month ago
On Friday morning, Rick Dhaliwal of Donnie and Dhali – The Team joined Mike Halford and guest host Jamie Dodd on Sportsnet 650’s Halford and Brough to discuss the latest Vancouver Canucks news, particularly focusing on the status of goaltender Casey DeSmith, who is slated to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1st.
 
DeSmith was traded to the Vancouver Canucks at the start of last season in exchange for Tanner Pearson and a 2025 third-round pick. DeSmith’s contract, a two-year deal with a cap hit of $1.8 million, is coming to an end, raising questions about his future with the Canucks.
DeSmith is among the best backups the Canucks have had in the past decade. While there were moments where Demko might have made a better save, DeSmith consistently gave his team a chance to win. However, the rise of Arturs Silovs, who impressed both during the regular season and in the playoffs, has shifted the team’s perspective, according to Dhaliwal.
“I’m hearing more and more that it’s going to be Demko and Silovs,” Dhaliwal said. “I think internally, the organization sees it as obvious: Demko and Silovs will be the two goalies next year in Vancouver.”
After Thatcher Demko was injured at the start of the playoffs, DeSmith stepped up admirably, filling in for two games before a minor groin injury sidelined him, allowing Silovs to take over.
Dhaliwal pointed out that Canucks management was very impressed with Silovs’ postseason performance. Dhaliwal added that with DeSmith set to become a UFA, there have been no talks between his agent, Jordan Newman, and the team since the season ended.
“It’s too bad because DeSmith was very popular in that dressing room,” Dhaliwal added, referencing a video where Demko gave DeSmith a hug after a great performance against Edmonton.
Statistically, DeSmith posted a 12-9-6 record in 29 games with a goals-against average of 2.89 and a save percentage of .895 during the 2023-24 regular season. In the playoffs, he had a 1-1-0 record with a 2.02 goals-against average and a .911 save percentage in two games.
With the expectation that Silovs will come in much cheaper, potentially under $2 million, the financial aspect also plays a role in the decision, as Dhaliwal reported earlier in the week that Tyler Myers was the lone upcoming free agent willing to take a pay cut.
“You might be able to get Silovs for under $2 million, maybe around $1.5 million,” Dhaliwal mentioned. Given these factors, DeSmith is likely to have good interest as a veteran backup when free agency opens on July 1st.
As the Canucks prepare for the next season, it appears the goalie tandem will consist of Thatcher Demko and Arturs Silovs. Meanwhile, DeSmith, despite his popularity and reliable performance in Vancouver, will no doubt explore opportunities with other teams.

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