The Canucks have two key trading pieces heading into the trade deadline: Erik Gudbranson and Thomas Vanek. The two pending unrestricted free agents are the two easiest pieces for Jim Benning to move, whereas other potential trade pieces are a little more complicated. Earlier this month, however, it was suggested that the Canucks might not want to trade Vanek in case the Sedins decide not to return next season. While the Sedins’ decision really shouldn’t have much bearing on what they do with Vanek, it appears to be weighing heavily on Benning’s mind. Now Bob McKenzie is reporting that the Canucks don’t want to trade Gudbranson either. On TSN’s Insider Trading, McKenzie reported that “the first priority at this point is to try to negotiate an extension with Gudbranson.” He continued to state that there have been no “specific contract talks” but that the Canucks and Gudbranson’s agent will meet in the coming weeks with the goal of negotiating a “multi-year extension.” “Only if they can’t get that extension done does he become a likely move at the deadline as a rental and they’re getting lots of calls on him at this time,” finished McKenzie. This is concerning, to say the least. Gudbranson has been a great fit with the Canucks in the locker room, but a poor fit on the ice. At this point, moving on seems like the best idea for both the team and the player. A trade at the deadline would be the best option, so as to recoup some of the assets lost in the initial trade that brought him over from Florida.
Canucks will try to extend Gudbranson
Vancouver Courier | Jan 30