Mike Gillis had a busy day on Friday, signing Mathieu Schneider and acquiring Christian Ehrhoff and Brad Lukowich in exchange for Daniel Rahimi and Canuckz.com favourite, Patrick White (that was sarcasm by the way). Lets take an in-depth look at everyone they acquired and everyone they let go:
Who did they let go?
Drafted in the first round in 2007 by former GM Dave Nonis, White appears destined to be yet another first round bust. The Canucks went off the board a bit to take him (he was projected to go in the 2nd round), and it looks like a mistake. In two years with the University of Minnesota, White has 26 points in 81 games. Last season he finished 10th in scoring on his team. If White turns out to be an NHL player, it’ll be a shock, if he turns into a star, it’ll be a miracle.
A third round pick from the 2006 draft, Rahimi hasn’t shown much promise. He hasn’t been exactly knocking on the door fighting for an NHL spot, and was probably let go because they don’t see him making much of an impact in his career.
Who did they acquire?
Ehrhoff was the key to the deal with the Sharks. The smooth skating 27 year old German has been a consistent point producer over the last four seasons. He’s a “puck moving defenceman”, and excels on the power play. The Sharks got rid of him to shed salary, even though he has a pretty fair deal, paying him $3.1 million per season for the next two years.
Brad Lukowich will bring experience, dependability and two Stanley Cup Rings to the Canucks blue line. He has one year left on his deal with a cap hit of $1.567 million. Not bad for a guy with his experience who is still only 32 years old. He’s also a BC boy.
Old man Schneider is now 40 years old, but he had a very productive season last year. Once re-acquired by Montreal, he kick-started their power play until getting injured. That’s the key with Schneider, how much gas does he have left in the tank, and can he stay healthy? Time will tell. Still a good signing, as it’s low risk (a one year deal worth reportedly $1.5 million) and potentially high reward. Schneider is a proven power play specialist, something the Canucks desperately needed. He also has a Stanley Cup ring, which now gives the Canucks three players on their roster that have won a Stanley Cup. I can’t remember the last time the Canucks were able to say that.
So what’s next? The Canucks now possess 8 NHL d-men making more than $1.5 million and 14 NHL calibre forwards. They’re also over the salary cap. This means that someone has to go, and probably a defenceman. You can’t have two defencemen sitting in the press box making more than $1.5 million a season. So who is on the way out? Some were speculating Bieksa on the radio Friday afternoon, but I can’t see Gillis getting rid of a guy like that. It remains to be seen who goes, but don’t count out Gillis asking Mitchell or Salo to waive their no-trade clauses.
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