Mid Summer Report: Vancouver Canucks

download (1)By Wayne Hallee @waynehallee9 at thehockeynuts.com

As we enter the dog days of summer, activity around the NHL slows down.  Most of the big-name free agents are off the board, and everyone is enjoying some much needed time off before everything heats up in the fall.  During this time, we are taking a look at all 30 teams to see where they are and what they still need to do.  Today, we look at the Vancouver Canucks

Last Season’s Finish:  31-38-13, 75 pts, 6th in the Pacific Division, missed the playoffs

Key Arrivals:

  • F Loui Eriksson (UFA)

Key Departures:

  • F Jaren McCann (Florida)
  • D Dan Hamhuis (Dallas)
  • F Linden Vey (Calgary)

Breakthrough Candidates:

  • F Jake Virtanen

Unsigned RFAs (as of 7/29)

  • None

Current Cap Situation as of 7/29 (source: generalfanager.com)

  • League salary ceiling: $73,000,000
  • League salary floor: $54,000,000
  • Current salary cap hit: $69,621,248
  • Current salary cap space: $3,478,752

 

Expected active roster

Forwards
Daniel Sedin, Henrik Sedin, Loui Eriksson, Alexandre Burrows, Brandon Sutter, Derek Dorsett, Jannik Hansen, Sven Baertschi, Markus Grandlund, Bo Horvat, Jake Virtanen, Brendan Gaunce, Emerson Etem

Defensemen
Alexander Edler, Christopher Tanev, Luca Sbisa, Erik Gudbranson, Nikita Tryamkin, Ben Hutton, Alex Biega, Andrey Pedan


Goalies
Ryan Miller, Jacob Markstrom

 

Outlook:

Vancouver has been relatively quiet in terms of transactions so far this summer.  They haven’t made any trades, and they have only signed a single unrestricted free agent, albeit a decent one in Loui Eriksson.  Eriksson will likely start on the top line with the Sedin twins, creating an all-Sweden top line.  Though this line will be fun to watch, it will likely not be enough to make this team a contender for the Stanley Cup championship, especially where they are in the tough Western Conference.  Most of their top players are over 30 years old, which poses a challenge for them long term.  If they are to make a strong playoff run, they will need big contributions from some of their younger players, like Jake Virtanen, Bo Horvat, Nikita Tryamkin, and Brendan Gaunce.  They are also close to reaching the salary cap ceiling (currently only $3.4M in cap space remaining), so don’t expect them to sign any more impact players.  Barring an upcoming trade, it looks like the Canucks are done for this summer.  If that is the case, fans in Vancouver could be in for another long year.