The Vancouver Canucks still haven’t managed to trade veteran winger Conor Garland, and according to Rick Dhaliwal, the team is aggressively working the phones to reward their players. Ideally, the Canucks will add more help on the right side of their blueline, and the New Jersey Devils might be willing to ship out Colin Miller when healthy.
The Devils acquired Miller for a fifth-round pick back on July 1, and since then, he’s struggled in preseason, held out of their lineup for the first few games, and now finds himself on injured reserve. With Simon Nemec waiting in the wings, the Devils would probably be better off moving Miller if they can.
The Canucks, meanwhile, can help New Jersey out with their forward depth in the form of Garland. Dawson Mercer has been ice-cold this year, and Alexander Holtz still hasn’t managed to break free of Lindy Ruff’s doghouse. Garland is at least an experienced player and can help fill the void of the departed Tomas Tatar.
Miller has a cap hit of only $1.85 million, so the Canucks will have to retain some Garland money if they want any chance at a potential deal with the Devils. In addition, the 31-year-old is in the last year of his two-year, $3.7 million contract, so he’ll be a rental. In terms of value, there’s not a lot in it for the Devils, but they’d probably have something rather than nothing. Miller, struggles notwithstanding, is probably an upgrade over both Tyler Myers and Mark Friedman.
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Neither the Devils nor the Canucks are afraid to engage in trade talks and mix it up, as evidenced by their two big moves near the trade deadline last season. There’s been no rumors linking the two teams together recently, but they did combine for a Curtis Lazar trade last year. We’ll have to see if Tom Fitzgerald or Patrik Allvin approach one another once again.