In a piece of significant Vancouver Canucks news, the team today announced that they finally acquired defenseman Nikita Zadorov from the Calgary Flames.
In the trade, the Canucks sent a 2024 fifth-round pick and a 2026 third-round pick to Calgary.
The Zadorov trade felt imminent, at least from a Canucks perspective, when Vancouver traded Anthony Beauvillier to the Chicago Blackhawks for a 2024 fifth-round pick. The Canucks sent that pick and one of their own to acquire the Russian defenseman.
Zadorov, 28, reportedly requested a trade from the Flames early in the 2023-24 season, and thus became instantly linked to the Vancouver Canucks. The interest from the organization was reciprocated by many insiders, and especially insider Rick Dhaliwal.
Dhaliwal previously reported that the team would be interested in Zadorov both on the trade market and in free agency, should he have become available come July 1. Instead, Vancouver pulled the trigger early, which felt like a real possibility after the Carson Soucy injury.
With Zadorov on their roster, the Canucks now have eight defensemen and 13 forwards. Pius Suter is currently on injured reserve, so when he’s ready to return to action, expect some movement on that front.
Lastly, the Vancouver Canucks face the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday night. That’s a game they will need to win – now or in the future – as the litmus test for their contender status. Even though the Golden Knights are without Shea Theodore for a few weeks, the Canucks still needed to beef up their blueline, on both sides of the defense.
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It’s currently unclear when Nikita Zadorov will make his Canucks debut, though the team has a few days between their games on Saturday and Tuesday. The 28-year-old should join up with the team soon, and then the Canucks will go from there.