Patrik Allvin once again works his magic for the Canucks in Ilya Mikheyev trade

General manager Patrik Allvin completes a trade with the Blackhawks, which gives the Canucks the opportunity to approach free agency more aggressively.
Edmonton Oilers v Vancouver Canucks - Game One
Edmonton Oilers v Vancouver Canucks - Game One / Derek Cain/GettyImages

Patrik Allvin's first full season as general manager in Vancouver, went better than anyone could have expected/predicted. The Canucks finished with their third-most points in team history, won the Pacific Division, and took the eventual Stanley Cup finalist Oilers all the way to seven games.

On a personal level, Allvin finished second in voting for NHL general manager of the year. To say next season will be a tough act to follow for the first ever Swedish general manager in NHL history, could be considered an understatement.

However, if recent events are anything to go by, Allvin is sure as well going to give it a damn good go at equalling, if not surpassing, the success of the 2023-24 campaign. He's already made one big move, by securing Filip Hronek to an eight-year, $58 million contract extension.

A trade which helps significantly on a financial level

Now though, comes another move, which is even more impressive. As confirmed on social media, the Canucks have traded Ilya Mikheyev, Sam Lafferty, and a second round pick in the 2027 NHL entry draft to the Chicago Blackhawks.

In return, the Canucks receive a fourth round pick which is also in the 2027 draft. In truth though, this is inconsequential in the grand scheme of things.

What matters most is that the Canucks have been able to get Mikheyev off their books while only having to retain 15 percent of his salary, which has two years and $9.5 million remaining. This is crucial in opening up more cap space for Allvin to work with moving forward.

Canucks now have more flexibility to negotiate

As per Cap Friendly, the Canucks now have $18,290,833 of projected cap space available for next season. And as things stand you can probably add an additional $2.5 million, which will cover the final year of Tucker Poolman's current contract being placed on Long-Term Injured Reserve in 2024-25.

With Lafferty being added into the deal, the Canucks are now down to just seven pending free agents (six unrestricted and one restricted) to deal with. Whether this can be used to help re-sign the likes of Nikita Zadorov and Elias Lindholm remains to be seen, but it sure as hell can't hurt.

And if for some reason Zadorov and/or Lindholm don't return to Vancouver next season, there's enough money to go after quality help. Whether it be pending free agent Jake Guentzel, or a trade for someone such as Mitch Mariner, or whoever.

When Mikheyev and his agent Dan Millstein were given permission by the Canucks to help facilitate a trade, we wondered how much this would actually help. However, as Allvin has already done during his short time in Vancouver, he once again exceeded expectations, which fans are hoping is a good sign for many years to come.

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From Allvin's perspective, while he would have preferred to hold onto the 2027 second round draft pick, he knows it was a necessity for an overall positive trade. As per Sportsnet's Iain MacIntyre, he said: "It’s always tough to give up assets to get out of contracts, but that’s just the reality in today’s NHL. But it does give us more flexibility on July 1 and leading up to Monday with our own free agents. From that standpoint, I was very pleased to get this trade done."

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