Canucks trade target approaching return to game action

Pittsburgh Penguins v Minnesota Wild
Pittsburgh Penguins v Minnesota Wild / Nick Wosika/GettyImages

If you were hoping for another Vancouver Canucks trade ahead of the 2024 NHL trade deadline, you might be in luck.

Pittsburgh Penguins forward Jake Guentzel has returned to the ice, and as of Monday, he is skating on his own on the road to recovery from his upper-body injury. The Canucks will play host to the Penguins at 7 p.m. on Tuesday night at the Rogers Arena.

When the Guentzel trade rumors first broke, the Canucks were one of the first teams linked to the elite winger. Despite the Canucks having already made trades for players like Elias Lindholm and Nikita Zadorov, a trade for Guentzel is reportedly still a possibility. Oh, and the Canucks' Director of Player Personnel was just taking in the Penguins' game against the Philadelphia Flyers on Sunday afternoon.

Guentzel, 29, is in the final year of a five-year, $30 million contract he signed with the Penguins on Dec. 27, 2018. The person who signed him to that contract is none other than Canucks president Jim Rutherford. The very next contract Rutherford gave out after signing Guentzel went to Canucks backup goalie Casey DeSmith. See where this is going?

In any case, the Canucks will need to shed some money somewhere along the line; they have $3.5 million in cap space at the moment with Carson Soucy and Tucker Poolman on LTIR.

In other Canucks news, the team is reportedly considering a move for a bottom-six forward, namely Brandon Duhaime of the Minnesota Wild. It's currently unclear when Dakota Joshua will become an option for the Canucks lineup again, so the team is likely just covering their bases in the interim.


It's a bit silly to see the Canucks linked to big-ticket players, given the dire salary cap situation, but I guess crazier things have happened. We'll see what ends up coming to fruition.