Make the Canucks great again. Right?
It won’t be easy, it won’t be quick, but it shouldn’t take 10 years.
For Canucks management to turn this around they need to recognize the situation this team is in and not go through the phase of trying to rebuild on the fly. It wont work with the current make-up of this team.
Here are 5 moves I believe the Canucks should make regardless of where the lottery balls fall on saturday:
1) GET NEW MANAGEMENT
Like I said, they need to recognize what the situation is and Jim Benning seems fairly incapable of doing that.
Find someone more competent to run this team. Not someone who will continue to do the “quick fix” like Benning has been doing over and over again.
2) Sell The Vets
Burrows, Vrbata, Dorsett, Prust, Edler and even Miller should all be let go/shopped. You need to get younger and having those three player take up roster spots and over 15 million in cap space isn’t smart.
They also need to signal a culture change. Shipping these guys out for picks/prospects allows you to bring in new veterans to help ease in the young core this team will build around.
3) Acquire Picks
Don’t trade these veteran players for more veteran players. The successful way to rebuild in today’s NHL is through the draft. Smart drafting sets you light years ahead and the Canucks are in a position now to stockpile draft picks by shipping out the veterans I mentioned earlier.
They also have to stop making “lateral” moves. I’m looking directly at the Sutter deal and the Shinkaruk deals. They served no purpose to making the team better now or down the road. This organization needs to set their sights on the future.
4) Regarding Free Agency
Don’t rush the kids you do have. McCann and Virtanen were both thrown to the wolves at times this year and it might benefit them to start the year in the AHL. And they’re going to have holes on the roster next year, but they shouldn’t just fill them with whoever they draft or more young prospects.
A smart move for this team would be to follow what the Toronto Maple Leafs did this past season and bring in some guys on one year deals or PTO’s that can play hard now and can we pushed out the door next year with no repercussions.
5) Free Space to Use Space
If they can successfully get rid of veterans on high paid, long term deals then it opens up the option to bring in players on high paid short term deals.
Take Bryan Bickell for example. If Vancouver were to take that salary, I’m sure the Hawks would be willing to throw in some picks/prospects. Which would only help with the future of this team.
Deryk Engelland, Dennis Wideman, RJ Umberger and James Wisniewski are other examples of players that have high paid, expiring deals and could be brought it along with some assets.