3 untouchable prospects the Canucks must not trade at the deadline

While the Vancouver Canucks should buy at or before the 2024 trade deadline, there are a few prospects they should strongly consider keeping around.

2022 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Round One
2022 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Round One / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages
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Tom Willander has been as-advertised so far and must stay in the system

The 11th overall pick in the 2023 draft, there is no way the Canucks need to trade such a high-potential, high-impact player who will end up in the top-four once he fully develops his game. He’s a two-way player who looked phenomenal with Rogle BK J20 in J20 Nationell in 2022-23, putting up 25 points and four goals in 39 contests, and Willander was just getting started.

He parlayed that performance into an 18-point outing in 30 contests at Boston University, and he also showed an ability to be continually disruptive when his team was trying to regain puck possession. 

While Willander won’t be NHL-ready next season and it would be wise for him to stay at Boston University, he’s one of those players who will eventually be a long-term fit for the Canucks on the blue line. And given what we have seen recently during his time in Sweden and at Boston University, there is no reason to believe he won’t be a two-way player when he eventually sports a blue and green uniform. 

Vancouver will need to sign some defensemen to extensions or at least bring in some stopgaps in the meantime. But like the other two players on this list, Willander will be more than worth the wait, so they need to keep him off the table when they start trade negotiations with other teams.