Five questions for the Canucks heading into next season

VANCOUVER, BC - APRIL 03: Quinn Hughes #43 of the Vancouver Canucks skates the puck againsts Evgenii Dadonov #63 of the Las Vegas Golden Knights during the second period in NHL action on April, 03, 2022 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Photo by Rich Lam/Getty Images)
VANCOUVER, BC - APRIL 03: Quinn Hughes #43 of the Vancouver Canucks skates the puck againsts Evgenii Dadonov #63 of the Las Vegas Golden Knights during the second period in NHL action on April, 03, 2022 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Photo by Rich Lam/Getty Images) /
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Mar 17, 2022; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; Vancouver Canucks forward Tanner Pearson (70) intercepts the mishandled puck from Detroit Red Wings goalie Alex Nedeljkovic (39) in the third period at Rogers Arena. Detroit won 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 17, 2022; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; Vancouver Canucks forward Tanner Pearson (70) intercepts the mishandled puck from Detroit Red Wings goalie Alex Nedeljkovic (39) in the third period at Rogers Arena. Detroit won 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports /

#2: Will a forward (or two) be moved out before the season starts?

One way to get help for the defence is to get rid of a forward. They can potentially get futures for one too.

Here is how the Canucks projected forward lineup for opening night from Matt Sekeres of the Sekeres and Price show,

https://twitter.com/sekeresandprice/status/1552700417796096000

Of course, Miller’s name is the biggest name for trade bait but talks have been quiet. Conor Garland is also one but he should be traded only for the right offer. Tanner Pearson is an ideal piece to trade but the question is, will there be any interest in him? Jason Dickinson as a likely healthy scratch wouldn’t be ideal but it is very unlikely he gets traded.

It also doesn’t look right seeing Vasily Podkolzin on the third line. He progressed well in his rookie season and playing him in the top six could help him get to the next level. Höglander is also looking to bounce back after a tough sophomore campaign. It doesn’t look right seeing him on the fourth line.

Trading a forward or two could also elevate Podkolzin and Höglander in the lineup. But could the Canucks actually do it? Let’s find out.

#3: How will the newcomers do?

The Canucks did bring in a bunch of players in free agency. The most notable ones are Curtis Lazar, Ilya Mikheyev and Dakota Joshua.

The one that will be under the microscope is Mikheyev. The speedy Russian winger signed a four-year deal worth 4.75 million dollars per season with the Canucks. But will he build off his 21-goal season and live up to his contract? Mikheyev was signed to bring scoring and some defensive stability to the top six. Could he live up to expectations?

The Canucks hope Lazar is the defensive penalty-killing centre

Joshua is an interesting player. Apparently, Rutherford is quite fond of him which he told CHEK TV’s, Rick Dhaliwal.

Joshua is a player that brings some snarl and physicality to the Canucks fourth line. I feel like this is a player that could potentially become a fan favourite. He seems like a player that could also be a pest on the fourth line.