3 reasons why the Canucks must trade for Jake Guentzel at the deadline

The Vancouver Canucks finally ended their skid, but a pedestrian record throughout February should have them scouring the trade market.

Jan 13, 2024; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA;  Pittsburgh Penguins left wing Jake Guentzel (59) looks
Jan 13, 2024; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; Pittsburgh Penguins left wing Jake Guentzel (59) looks / James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports
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Guentzel could turn Vancouver’s power play into a top-five unit

This one makes a full circle back to the second slide in this piece, but on the man advantage. Jake Guentzel has logged over 500 power play minutes over the past season-and-a-half. While the Canucks power play currently ranks 11th in the league with a 22.80 success rate, Guentzel’s presence can break it into the top 10. 

As with most of his numbers this season, Guentzel’s conversion rate on the power play isn’t what it was in the past, sitting with an on-ice conversion rate of just nine percent and a measly 19 goals in 50 games. But once again, it’s crucial to point out that the Penguins aren’t as sound offensively as they were in the past. 

Therefore, let’s look to the recent past to get a full judgment call on Guentzel and what he can do. Last season, the Penguins power play unit converted 46 goals while he was on the ice, good for a 15.3 on-ice goals for percentage. The year before that wasn’t much different, with the Penguins converting 43 goals on the man advantage with Guentzel on the ice with a 15.0 oiGF. 

Vancouver is good on the man advantage, but nobody has accused this team of being great at 5-on-4. Guentzel’s presence, even if he’s only there for the remainder of the season, will change that. 

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(Statistics provided by Hockey-Reference as of February 26th)