On Canucks free agents and buyouts
Iain MacIntyre of Sportsnet: (mailbag) The Vancouver Canucks should be looking to keep both Jake Virtanen and Troy Stecher. If they are okay with not bringing Stecher back, he won’t be qualified and would become a UFA. Virtanen should have decent trade value as the 23-year old had 18 goals this past season if they want to go route.
Forward Micheal Ferland has three years left at $10.5 million and there has been no talk of the Canucks buying him out.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman may not be interested in having compliance buyouts this offseason unless the salary cap drops.
It’s unlikely that Loui Eriksson would retire as he has two years left and is owed $8 million. The Canucks could see if they could convince him to mutually terminate his contract (like the Sabres and Zach Bogosian) so that he could be a free agent and sign elsewhere. If not, he could be sent to the AHL.
The Canucks won’t be buyers this offseason.
It might cost the Canucks around $5 million a season for around five years to re-sign Toffoli. Believe there is interest from both sides to see if they can reach a deal.
A Jets unlikely center trade option, and a look at their blue line
Murat Ates of The Athletic: (mailbag) Paul Stastny has a year left on his deal at $6.5 million and has played a lesser role with the Vegas Golden Knights this past season. He’s already waived his no-trade clause for the Winnipeg Jets before. If the Jets were to trade for him they would need to clear some salary cap space. Mathieu Perreault has a year left at $4.125 million. The Golden Knights will more than likely keep Stastny.
Guessing that the Jets blue line next year will consist of Josh Morrissey – Dylan DeMelo, Dmitry Kulikov – Neal Pionk and Ville Heinola – Tucker Poolman. One of Luca Sbisa, Nathan Beaulieu and Anthony Bitetto would be re-signed. Maybe the Jets could replace Kulikov with a veteran left-handed defenseman like Brenden Dillon.
Believe the Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff’s top priority this offseason is to re-sign DeMelo. Don’t see them going after a big name in free agency or trade unless someone unique becomes available.