4 Abbotsford Canucks players to watch this season

KELOWNA, BC - FEBRUARY 15: Arshdeep Bains #20 of the Red Deer Rebels skates against the Kelowna Rockets at Prospera Place on February 15, 2020 in Kelowna, Canada. (Photo by Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)
KELOWNA, BC - FEBRUARY 15: Arshdeep Bains #20 of the Red Deer Rebels skates against the Kelowna Rockets at Prospera Place on February 15, 2020 in Kelowna, Canada. (Photo by Marissa Baecker/Getty Images) /

The Vancouver Canucks did not make the playoffs last season but the Abbotsford Canucks did.

In their first year in Abbotsford, there were some ups and downs but the AHL Canucks went 39-23-5-1. That was good enough for fifth in the Pacific Division. Unfortunately, their playoff performance was not good.

Abbotsford was at the hands of a two-game sweep (In a best of three) from the Bakersfield Condors, the Edmonton Oilers AHL affiliate.

After such a solid first year for the Abby Canucks, you had every right to be disappointed in them.

There are many returning players in Abbotsford heading into next season and some new ones too. Former Chicago Blackhawks head coach Jeremy Colliton is now behind the bench and Abbotsford will look to build off last season.

Here are four Abby Canucks players you should probably keep an eye on.

#1: Arshdeep Bains

Arshdeep Bains was Patrik Allvin’s first signing as the Canucks general manager.

Bains was signed to an entry-level deal last spring and he was coming off a monster final year in the WHL with the Red Deer Rebels. In 68 games as an overager, the Surrey BC native scored 43 goals and managed 69 assists for 112 points.

Bains will likely get bottom-six minutes in Abbotsford. His NHL potential is most likely a bottom-six winger.

The 21-year-old brings a ton of skill, size and grit. He is a player that can put points and can get physical. Bains has the potential to be a fan favourite in Abbotsford.

#2: Danila Klimovich

The Canucks second-round pick in 2021 had an interesting year with Abbotsford.

Danila Klimovich put up eight goals and 10 assists. He didn’t get much ice time last season which at times, made sense. However, former Abbotsford head coach (and now an assistant in Vancouver) Trent Cull decided to scratch Klimovich in the two playoff games against the Condors. That was a real head-scratcher. What made things more bizzare was that Jett Woo was playing as a forward in place of him.

However, with Colliton now at the helm, the Belarusian centre will likely get more minutes.

Consistency was an issue with Klimovich. There is lots to like about him. He has a nice shot and slick hands. There is still some NHL potential in Klimovich. Maybe year two will be different.

#3: Linus Karlsson

It looked like Linus Karlsson wasn’t really going to amount to anything a few years ago. However, he has turned some heads.

Karlssson scored 26 goals with Skellefteå AIK of the SHL. He broke the SHL’s rookie scoring record which was previously held by Elias Pettersson who scored 24 in 2017-18.

This will be Karlsson’s first time in North America so playing with the Abbotsford Canucks is the best option for him.

Karlsson can bring goals and displays a nice bit of speed. It will be interesting to see what he can bring to Abbotsford.

#4: Arturs Silovs

The future of Michael DiPietro is unclear. The Canucks also signed Colin Delia who likely will be the starter in Abbotsford next season. However, Arturs Silovs is the goalie to keep an eye on.

Silovs was the third wheel behind Spencer Martin and DiPietro last season. He had an inconsistent year going with a 3-6-0 record, 3.10 goals against average and a .888 save percentage. However, Silovs showed some flashes of brilliance.

He is a big athletic goaltender but tends to let in a bad goal every now and then. But Silovs has a ton of upside. If he can get to good form, he could end the season as Abbotsford’s starter. He just needs to be more consistent and work on the little things like his stance which was pointed out by Canucks Army’s David Quadrelli. (And Silovs’ biggest fan)

Perhaps Silovs will benefit from new Abbotsford goalie coach Marko Torenius (Was with SKA St. Petersburg prior to joining the Canucks) who replaces Curtis Sanford. (Sanford left the Canucks organization to become the Toronto Maple Leafs’ new goalie coach.) Torenius has worked with goalies Igor Shesterkin in the past.

dark. Next. 3 Canucks that will be under pressure next season

Which players in Abbotsford will you be keeping an eye on? Let us know in the comments below!