Trade Scenario #3:
The Minnesota Wild currently see themselves sitting fourth in the Central division in an absolute battle for seeding with the Avalanche, Blues, and Predators. After a hot start, they’ve cooled down a bit, but their sights are set on competing for the Stanley Cup.
After being a middle-of-the-pack team for years, the Wild must put their chips in and reward their fan base by making a push for the ultimate prize. Enough of the mediocrity and first-round exits; when a player like Miller becomes available, they should be all over it. Kevin Fiala’s name was floated around in possible trade packages for Miller earlier in the year, but he alone will likely not get it done. The Wild will likely need to sweeten the deal with a draft pick and a top prospect.
JT Miller (C/LW)
Kevin Fiala (LW)
Carson Lambos (D)
2022 1st Round Pick
The Minnesota Wild add a legitimate 1st line center to play alongside Kaprizov and Zuccarello for two seasons before potentially extending him. For the Canucks, they immediately plug in a top-six replacement for Miller and add a top right-handed defenceman prospect in addition to a first-round pick. Fiala has proven to be a 50 point winger in the league, and at 25 years old, he still has room to grow as the flashy forward looks to settle down in a new home. Fiala has been teetering on the edge of being just a solid top-six forward or an absolute star in this league for a couple of seasons now. He is what Miller was before he arrived in Vancouver.
According to MoneyPuck, Fiala’s advanced stats suggest that he’s on the cusp of stardom. His 13.2 expected goals are tied with the likes of Steven Stamkos, and ahead of players like Brad Marchand, Aleksander Barkov, Brayden Point, and several other notable names. More impressively he leads the Wild with 1.21 expected goals per 60 minutes. Fiala is a legitimate goal scorer in this league and could take the next step in Vancouver playing with the likes of Pettersson and Boeser.
Furthermore, the organizational defense depth is quite bare for the Canucks, and the addition of Lambos would shoot him up to the top of the depth chart when it comes to their prospect pool.
Trade Scenario # 4:
Adding Miller to the Panthers forward group would almost be unfair, and they have plenty of assets in the chamber to get the deal done. Similar to the Rangers, the Canucks have an opportunity to take advantage of a deep prospect pool to complete the deal. It’s unlikely the Panthers part ways with rookie sensation Anton Lundell, but a player like Owen Tippett should definitely be attainable as the centerpiece of a Miller trade package. The Panthers will have to ante up more pieces with a likely bidding war to acquire the star center. As mentioned earlier, a 50% retained top-line center will bring back a massive haul to Vancouver.
JT Miller (C/LW) (50% retained)
Owen Tippett (RW)
Matthew Samoskevich (RW)
2023 1st Round Pick
2024 2nd Round Pick
Though Owen Tippett’s production hasn’t been up to par with his draft selection, at just 22 years old, Tippett has the potential to still live up to those pre-draft expectations with a more prominent role and an increase in ice time with fewer expectations on the Canucks.
According to MoneyPuck Even with very limited ice time, Owen Tippett carries an expected goals of 7.6 on the season, which would be good for 10th on the Panthers. What’s more impressive is his expected goals per 60 minutes which ranks 8th on the team, ahead of players like Carter Verhaeghe, Anton Lundell, and Aaron Ekblad. Tippett is no stranger to shooting the puck, which is a great attribute for a young player. He gets his fair share of chances, but has been snake bitten this year with a 7.9% shooting percentage, ranking 7th worst on the team. Nonetheless he has a knack for creating chances, contributing 3.41 high danger expected goals, which is good for 6th on the Panthers. Advanced stats show that Tippett is on the verge of a possible breakout and some puck luck can go a long way to achieving that.
With that being said, with Tippett not being a blue-chip prospect, the Panthers will have to create a more attractive package by adding Matthew Samoskevich. The 2021 first-rounder is part of the powerhouse University of Michigan squad and has produced adequately as a freshman without significant ice-time. For a team like the Canucks, anytime you get the chance to add high draft picks, you take it.