The Vancouver Canucks are in line for one of the busiest and most difficult offseasons in franchise history. Here is the latest news on Canucks rumours.
The Vancouver Canucks 50th season is over and now the hard work of General Manager Jim Benning really begins. He needs to get cracking on what needs to be done to secure this team’s future of Stanley Cup contention.
There are more than a handful of UFA’s and RFA’s looking for new contracts. Team MVP Jacob Markstrom is waiting patiently for a well-deserved contract. The team’s newest addition Tyler Toffoli played himself into “top-priority” status in short order. Veteran defender Chris Tanev looked to be the perfect linemate for Quinn Hughes. And that’s just the big-name players who will hit free agency if an agreement isn’t met by October 9th (Free agency window may change).
For RFAs, Jake Virtanen, Adam Gaudette, Tyler Motte, Zack MacEwen, and Troy Stecher will all be looking for a raise. For the rest of the lot, it’s difficult to say there will be enough money to go around because there won’t be. Benning will have to make some very difficult decisions on some young players. There is just no way around it. Someone is going to draw the short stick.
Working hard, Benning has already been on the phone with other managers around the NHL. He’ll be looking to swing deals, move out cap space and to try and require draft picks in return for players if at all possible. Let’s dive into the latest rumours about what’s going on behind the scenes in Vancouver.
Markstrom is obviously a big target for the Canucks and he’ll have a lineup of callers waiting with a pen and an open chequebook if he makes it to free agency. According to Irfaan Gaffar, Sportsnet writer, a four-year deal worth an annual amount of $5 million dollars is likely how far the Canucks are willing to take their offers. With Markstrom asking for expansion protection it lowers his demand and/or term in negotiations. Something that favours Vancouver.
As for the latest on priority No. 2, Toffoli wants to stay in Vancouver and apparently an offer has been pitched already. Coming from the same sources on the Markstrom contract, Toffoli has not only voiced his opinion to management about staying and playing with Pettersson but Pettersson himself has voiced to the Benning that he would like Toffoli to stay. Gaffar believes something around a four-year deal at $4.8 million could potentially get the deal done.
The dollar figure is down when players get the opportunity to play alongside elite talent, especially in the likes of the Swedish centerman and the young American defender. Like Markstrom though, Toffoli will have a handful of teams asking for his services with the chance to play top-line minutes as well. The only thing is, Pettersson is one of the best young players on the planet and he plays for the Vancouver Canucks. Toffoli got a taste of that, and I’m sure he wants more.
Lastly, TSN’s very own Rick Dhaliwal has brought the latest scoop on the playoff warrior, the 25-year-old Motte. Everyone and their dog liked what this kid can do. He’s an energy guy who brings the real deal to the bottom-six every time he touches the ice. According to his agent Rich Evans, Dhaliwal thinks that both sides are highly interested in getting a deal done with some term. Negotiations are yet to take place.
You have to think that this is all good news. The number figure for both Markstrom and Toffoli is lower than expected and along with those two, Motte has stated that he wants to return to the Canucks next season.
It’s early, but so far this is a winning situation for what’s expected to be a losing summer for Benning and Vancouver’s hockey team. There is still lots to unpack and The Canuck Way will be here with all the answers when the time comes. Stay tuned.