Canucks News & Rumors: Boeser, Miller, Hoglander & More

Welcome to the Vancouver Canucks’ News & Rumors. In this edition, Brock Boeser has become a lead trade candidate for the Canucks, and the New Jersey Devils are a team who could trade for the forward. Additionally, a few more teams are interested in J.T. Miller, including the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Canucks are also looking to add a top-end young defender, while there are also updates surrounding NIls Hoglander and Tyler Motte.

Boeser to Devils Trade Possible

Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli reported Boeser has become the Canucks leading trade candidate and questioned if New Jersey is a fit for the forward. Seravalli said the club’s president of hockey operations, Jim Rutherford, has expressed the importance of cap flexibility, and there is a sense the organization doesn’t believe Boeser will play up to his $7.5 million qualifying offer.

Brock Boeser Vancouver Canucks
Brock Boeser, Vancouver Canucks (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Boeser has scored 11 goals and posted 22 points in 28 games, with Bruce Boudreau as the team’s head coach. The Canucks could get a decent package in return for their 2015 first-round draft pick from the Devils. The club has shown interest in New Jersey’s Pavel Zacha, who could use a change of scenery and would fit in as a third-line centre for the club.

Interest in Miller Around the NHL

Former Canucks assistant general manager (GM) and current Maple Leafs’ assistant GM, Laurence Gillman, was spotted scouting Miller during the team’s games against the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils, according to TSN’s Pierre LeBrun.

LeBrun adds the Canucks aren’t into the idea of trading the forward, and it would take a lot for the organization to move Miller. However, teams around the NHL are still showing interest in the 28-year-old. The Athletic’s Thomas Drance and Rick Dhaliwal reported Miller is by far the New York Rangers’ top target, and the Colorado Avalanche have also shown interest in him (from ‘What we’re hearing about the Canucks’ priorities 17 days out from the NHL trade deadline,’ The Athletic, March 4, 2021).

Canucks Want a High-End Young Defender

Drance and Dhaliwal reported the Canucks are interested in adding a high-end young defender in the 20-25-year-old range to bolster their blue line. 

“Over a 12-18 month time horizon, the Canucks’ priority is to add at least one blue chip young blue line prospect — and ideally two — capable of filling in immediately and emerging over time to help address the back-end, which remains the Canucks’ most significant flaw.”

Related: Canucks: 4 Trade Destinations for Tyler Myers

Two names they mentioned were Arizona Coyotes’ Jacob Chychrun and Avalanche’s Bowen Byram. The Canucks didn’t call back on Chychrun once the club found out the price on the defender. However, in the talks with the Avalanche for Miller, the Canucks asked for Byram. The Cranbrook, B.C. native has stepped away from the Avalanche due to concussion symptoms, but he has impressed in his second NHL season. He has scored five goals and posted 11 points in 18 games this season. He played in the Western Hockey League with the Vancouver Giants for four seasons as well.

Hoglander Trade Interest

Dhaliwal added on Donnie and Dhali the Canucks have received a lot of calls on Hoglander as well, however, the organization doesn’t want to move him. Two of the teams interested in Hoglander are the Minnesota Wild and Los Angeles Kings. 

Nils Hoglander Vancouver Canucks
Nils Hoglander, Vancouver Canucks (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Hoglander has had a tough sophomore season and has slowly lost the trust of head coach Bruce Boudreau over the past few months. As a result, he’s seen his minutes drop. However, Hoglander isn’t a player the Canucks should trade. He is young, skilled and gritty, which makes him a player the organization should want to keep for their future. 

Motte Contract Talks

Motte is a pending unrestricted free agent, and the Canucks will have to decide on if they will trade him or not before the March 12th trade deadline. Seravalli reports the forward could ask for a contract similar to Columbus Blue Jackets forward Sean Kuraly.

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“There is seemingly the framework of what a market value deal for Motte could look like if it were to come together over the next 17 days: See Sean Kuraly‘s 4 years x $2.5 million deal in Columbus.”

Motte has proven to be a quality bottom-six forward who can provide offence and kill penalties. He has scored six goals and posted 13 points in 41 games. However, if he asks for a four-year deal with an average annual value of $2.5 million, it might be too much for the forward. He’ll be 31 years old in four years, and the Canucks already have a few depth players who are signed for the next few seasons. Therefore, Rutherford and GM Patrik Allvin should try to talk him down from a $2.5 million cap hit.


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