Vancouver Canucks Free Agency: Top 6 Strategies to Use

Jan 7, 2016; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Arizona Coyotes left wing Mikkel Boedker (89) controls the puck against the Calgary Flames during the first period at Scotiabank Saddledome. Arizona Coyotes won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 7, 2016; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Arizona Coyotes left wing Mikkel Boedker (89) controls the puck against the Calgary Flames during the first period at Scotiabank Saddledome. Arizona Coyotes won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mar 18, 2016; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Colorado Avalanche center Shawn Matthias (18) skates during the warmup period against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. Colorado Avalanche won 4-3. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports /

#3 SIZE: A Few Familiar Faces

Size is the other side of the story that Jim Benning always preaches. Though many point to players like Johnny Gaudreau and Martin St. Louis to argue that size is not a must for an NHL player in this new era of playing — what good is a 5-foot-10 Nikita Tryamkin and a 5-foot-9 Erik Gudbranson?

As noted above, the Canucks have good size on the blueline. The forwards, however, don’t have much size, nor do they have much grit. Though Sutter is a big body, his physicality is almost unnoticed. Dorsett, Virtanen, and Etem may be the only ones who can rough it up.

More from The Canuck Way

LW Viktor Stalberg (30) 20 pts / 75 GP
C Shawn Matthias (28) 28 pts / 71 GP
RW Troy Brouwer (30) 52 pts / 102 GP*

Stalberg: 6’3″, 210 lbs
Matthias: 6’4″, 230 lbs
Brouwer: 6’3″, 210 lbs

And you will see a couple of familiar faces on that list. I was always a fan of Shawn Matthias and now that he has survived a horrid season with the Toronto Maple Leafs, my respect for the big man is even greater. He brings a formidable force to the faceoff dot as well as a young leadership voice to the bench.

Of course, our dear Troy Brouwer makes the list after pointing out that he has a great interest in signing with the Canucks. Though speed is not his forte, he proved once again that he can still score at a decent level to provide strong secondary support for the Sedins should he come to Van City.

His leadership, as well as his Burrows-like tenacity, leads me to say that the Canucks will love the big man.

Impact on the Line Up

The only issue with bringing Brouwer to Vancouver will be the inability to then play Jake Virtanen on a scoring line. I do not think the Canucks want to develop Virtanen into a bottom-six checker after drafting him with the sixth-overall pick.

Next: SCORING: Must Spend to Score