Tackling Regression

The Vancouver Canucks have surprised a number of hockey fans in the past few days with their questionable transactions. The biggest splash began Tuesday when the Canucks traded 24th overall pick from the 2013 NHL Entry Draft Hunter Shinkaruk to the Calgary Flames in exchange for Markus Granlund. The Canucks pushed forward Wednesday afternoon, letting teams know which players were available to teams around the league, and finished off the day by acquiring defenceman Philip Larsen from the Edmonton Oilers.

Hunter Shinkaruk is noted as a great forward that the Canucks developed with their AHL affiliate, the Utica Comets. In only 45 games, Shinkaruk has scored 21 goals and 18 assists for a total of 39 points. At 5’11, Shinkaruk has not pushed himself closer to the slot, staying on the outside with a mediocre shot. Despite an improving shot, Shinkaruk is only 21 years young and can develop his skills as a potent NHL forward. Shinkaruk has 11 goals at even strength and is a special teams wizard. He’ll excel with Sam Bennett in the future.

Markus Granlund has experience in the National Hockey League, with poor numbers of four goals and three assists in 31 games. In 12 games with Calgary’s affiliate however, Granlund has scored five goals and four assists. Markus needs to transition his abilities to the NHL level, like his brother who plays for the Minnesota Wild, Mikael. Hopefully he can find his offensive abilities with former Flames’ teammate Sven Baertschi.

Wednesday afternoon, Bob McKenzie tweeted a list of players that the Canucks will shop by trade deadline. Don’t expect all these players to be traded by 3pm Monday. If Vancouver is diving into a rebuild, a couple players such as Linden Vey or Yannick Weber could be packaged with a possible Ryan Miller, Dan Hamhuis, Radim Vrbata, or Alex Burrows. The Canucks could have picks and prospects in return, but maybe not the abundance of picks that the Toronto Maple Leafs are acquiring.

The Canucks finished off Wednesday night in acquiring defenceman Philip Larsen from the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for a conditional fourth/fifth-round pick (condition depends on Larsen’s success). Philip Larsen is likely the second pairing defenceman that will replace Frank Corrado in 2016-17, a void that has hurt the Canucks since the beginning of the season.

The Canucks love trading with Canadian teams. Which players will the Vancouver Canucks trade by the 2016 NHL trade deadline? What do you think of Markus Granlund and Philip Larsen? Post your thoughts in the comments below!

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