The Vancouver Canucks are reportedly exploring defenceman Tyler Myers‘ trade value, as reported by The Fourth Period’s David Pagnotta.
“They want to wait a couple of weeks to see how the team performs and exactly what the marketplace has to bear for some of their players, including Tyler Myers,” Pagnotta said last Tuesday.
“The objective is to not only shake up the roster and retool a little bit, but also to free up a little bit of cap space going into next season so that (Canucks GM) Patrik Allvin and (President, Hockey Operations) Jim Rutherford can really put their mark on this club.”
The Canucks have been exploring trade interest on players other than Elias Pettersson, Quinn Hughes and Thatcher Demko, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman. Although J.T. Miller, Brock Boeser and Conor Garland have received interest from clubs around the NHL, Myers might be the best player for the Canucks to trade.
The Canucks have added Oliver Ekman-Larsson this past offseason, which provides the team with a top-four defenceman who can produce when needed. Additionally, on the right side, Luke Schenn and Kyle Burroughs have played well on a team-friendly contract. Myers has three seasons left with an average annual value of $6 million.
It will be tough for the Canucks to trade Myers for a few reasons. First, the defender has a 10 team no-trade list. Also, it’ll be hard to trade him to one of the top teams in the league as most of the organizations have a limited amount of cap space. Therefore, the club will likely have to dump the veteran defenceman off onto one of the teams at the bottom of the league standings who can afford his contract.
The Buffalo Sabres drafted Myers with the 12th overall pick in the 2008 NHL Draft. A reunion with his original team could be possible. The Sabres have a projected cap space of $13.541 million this season and will have $39.670 million this offseason.
The club has a fairly young core and could use a veteran defenceman in their top four next season. Aside from Henri Jokiharju and Casey Fitzgerald, the Sabres don’t have any other right-shot defenders on the roster. With Rasmus Dahlin on the left side and Owen Power joining him as a left-shot d-man next season, Myers could balance out the club’s top four along with Jokiharju. The 6-foot-8 vet will only have two seasons remaining on his contract, so the Sabres will not be forced to commit to him for the long term.
Columbus Blue Jackets
The Columbus Blue Jackets traded away their top right-handed defenceman in Seth Jones and could use Myers to replace him. The Blue Jackets have had a tough time keeping players and could be a good fit for Myers. They have $10.357 million in projected cap space and are projected to have $29.029 million in cap space this offseason.
Myers could join Zach Werenski, Vladislav Gavirkov and Adam Boqvist to help round out the Blue Jackets blue line next season. Columbus sits eight points out of the second wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference and will likely not make the playoffs this season. Unless the club decides to rebuild, they can use Myers to help boost their blue line and hopefully make the playoffs next season.
The Canucks were able to dump three of their worst contracts off on the Arizona Coyotes in the 2021 offseason. The organization traded away Loui Eriksson, who had one year left at $6 million, Antoine Roussel and Jay Beagle, both had one season remaining at $3 million each. The club could attempt to do the same with Myers. However, they may have to give up a draft pick in addition, similar to how they gave up the ninth overall pick in the 2021 NHL Draft to move Eriksson, Beagle and Roussel.
The Coyotes have $10.357 million in projected cap space and will have $46.080 million in projected cap space in the offseason. The club has picked up quite of few veteran players with overpaid contracts over the past couple of seasons, but with the addition of a draft pick. They may be willing to pick up Myers’ contract as well as long as the defenceman is willing to join the club and the Canucks offer them a draft pick.
Before the start of the 2021-22 season, Ottawa Senators general manager Pierre Dorion announced the team’s rebuild was done, and they were moving into another zone. Instead, the Senators rank 26th in the league standings with a 19-28-5 record. The Senators are looking to take the next step in their development, and although Myers will likely not get them there, he could help boost their blue line as a mobile veteran defender.
The Senators have a projected cap space of $10.805 million and will have a projected cap space of $29.406 million in the offseason. They could add Myers to their top four and play him with Thomas Chabot while having Artem Zub and Nikita Zaitsev behind him.
Canucks Would Have to Give Up a Draft Pick in Myers Trade
The Canucks would likely have to give up a draft pick in the first three or four rounds in a trade involving Myers. Although he has played his best hockey with the Canucks this season, he hasn’t produced as much as he is expected to. He has scored one goal and posted 13 points in 55 games this season. Losing another early-round pick may be a tough pill to swallow for the organization as they haven’t picked in the first round the last two years and won’t have their second-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft. Additionally, the team is looking to add to their prospect pool and moving a draft pick would hurt that process.
Sartaaj has been watching hockey for over 15 years and covers the Vancouver Canucks for The Hockey Writers.