Updated Potential Commercial Landings for Vancouver Canucks Striker Bo Horvat | News, Scores, Highlights, Statistics & Rumors

Updated Potential Commercial Landings for Vancouver Canucks Forward Bo Horvat

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    via Getty Images Jeff Vinnick/NHLI

    At this point, it seems a matter of when, not whether the Vancouver Canucks will trade Bo Horvat.

    The Canucks are out of the playoff table in the Western Conference and the season up to this point has been a huge disappointment. Horvat is also an unrestricted free agent in the final year of his current contract and pending after the 2022-23 season.

    There’s certainly the possibility of re-signing and making a long-term commitment to the Canucks, but contract negotiations are reportedly not going well up to this point. This could make Horvat one of the most attractive options as the March trading deadline approaches.

    Horvat, who scored a career-high 31 goals (in just 70 games) in the 2021-22 season, scored 22 goals in 30 games until Monday, reaching a pace of 60 goals in 82 games.

    Maybe that number will drop a bit when his shooting percentage (currently 22.7 percent) starts to drop, but he’s still having a great year and has become a bona fide senior center. Any team in the league would be happy to add him for the hard run and the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

    Back in October, we had our first look at teams that might be interested, so let’s follow along and see who might make sense and who should be interested.

Colorado Avalanche

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    DENVER, COLORADO - DEC 17: Colorado Avalanche's #18 Alex Newhook celebrates on the bench after scoring against the Nashville Predators at the Ball Arena on December 17, 2022, in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Michael Martin/NHLI via Getty Images)

    via Getty Images Michael Martin/NHLI

    Defending Stanley Cup champions have two big problems this season.

    The first is that they could continue to replace last year’s #2 center Nazem Kadri after leaving the Calgary Flames as an unrestricted free agent.

    Secondly, they’ve certainly been mostly broken by injuries so far, with Nathan MacKinnon, Gabriel Landeskog, Valeri Nichushkin and many others losing significant time.

    This combination left Avalanche as a mid-ranked team in the Western Conference as we head into the holiday weekend.

    Not where they want to be or expect to be. Being healthy will definitely solve most of their problems, but if they are to compete for the Stanley Cup again, they could definitely use an upgrade behind MacKinnon.

    Horvat would be a dream solution.

    Colorado has exhausted most of its draft capital this year and next year and has only eight picks in the 2023 and 2024 drafts. Only two of these picks (each of the next two first-round players) make it into the first three rounds of either class. This can definitely limit what they can do, like the salary cap situation.

    If Colorado had a chance to extend Horvat, someone like Alex Newhook would be an attractive center for a deal, but given Newhook’s advantage, that could be a very high price to pay for a potential lease.

    Either way, Colorado should be in the market for a second line center upgrade and Horvat would be ideal.

Boston Bruins

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    BOSTON, MA - DEC 17: Boston congratulates Boston Bruins right wing David Pastrnak (88) on his opening goal in a game between the Boston Bruins and the Columbus Blue Jackets at the TD Garden on December 17, 2022, in Boston, Massachusetts. is doing.  (Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

    Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

    Let’s be brave here.

    The Bruins currently have two key centers, Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci, but this is a position where they lack long-term depth.

    There’s no guarantee either player will return next season, which could leave a glaring void for Boston.

    Could this be an opportunity for the Bruins to do what they did with defender Hampus Lindholm a year ago? futures contract?

    Not only will Horvat give the Bruins incredible scoring depth in the short term and greatly increase their chances for a Stanley Cup run this season, but this scenario could also fill a serious long-term need. In this year’s playoffs, not many clubs could match the mid-ranges Bergeron, Krejci and Horvat.

    With only 12 players currently under contract for the 2023-24 season, the Bruins have a ton of money coming out of the ledgers after this season.

    But the problem Boston will face with this type of deal is that Vancouver comes up with an offer they want. The Bruins’ farm system is one of the thinnest in the NHL, and while Fabian Lysell and John Beecher are intriguing candidates, neither of them really plan on being a top-notch player at this point.

New Jersey Demons

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    NEWARK, NJ - DEC 17: New Jersey Devils' Erik Haula #56 celebrates his third-period goal against the Florida Panthers on December 17, 2022, at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.  (Photo by Rich Graessle/NHLI via Getty Images)

    Rich Graessle/NHLI via Getty Images

    The New Jersey Devils seem to have arrived, and when you have a strong young core and better than you expected, faster than you expected, you should try to hit it while the iron is hot.

    Horvat will be an interesting option for Demons because it will give them so many different options.

    They could use him as the second line center and slam Jack Hughes back into the wing, or they could keep Hughes in the center and roll them in the middle with Nico Hischier, Hughes and Horvat, which would be a nightmarish matchup for any potential playoff team. .

    Plus, the Devils have a lot to do as a potential partner for the Canucks.

    New Jersey could be a preferred trading partner for Vancouver as it is in the Eastern Conference and has one of the best collections of young talent in the league. There’s also money coming off the record this off-season and could offer Horvat a long-term extension.

    Maybe they want to solidify another position, but the Devils have a team that looks good enough to fight right now and adding a potential center to 35 or 40 goals in the middle of this roster could turn them into a nightmare. to strive.

Pittsburgh Penguins

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    BUFFALO, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 09: Pittsburgh Penguins' #77 Jeff Carter with his teammates after Brock McGinn's goal in the third period of an NHL hockey game against the Buffalo Sabers on December 09, 2022 at the KeyBank Center in Buffalo, New Celebrating York.  (Photo: Joshua Bessex/Getty Images)

    Joshua Bessex/Getty Images

    If Jim Rutherford were still running the Penguins instead of the Canucks, that’s exactly the kind of move I could see into their future. A blockbuster addition just before the deadline for an all-in run in a Stanley Cup? That’s what Pittsburgh did under his rule.

    But Ron Hextall is a little more reserved in his approach to team building, so this clearly changes things.

    The Penguins have reversed their season after a slow start and look like potential contenders again in the Eastern Conference. His two superstars, Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, are still in the middle, but there’s a pretty big drop of talent in position after these two players.

    Teddy Blueger is good in the fourth line role, but Jeff Carter didn’t do much to elevate the third line. Every Penguins team that won the Stanley Cup during the Crosby-Malkin-Kris Letang era had three dominant scoring lines, and that third line had a name that made the difference: Jordan Staal and Carl Hagelin in 2009, Nick Bonino’s HBK line. and Phil Kessel in 2016 and 2017. Carter is not on this team.

    Horvat could give them that model one more time.

    The trade match here would be tough. This Pittsburgh team has players Rutherford clearly loves, notably Kasperi Kapanen, whom Rutherford drafted in 2014 and then re-acquired in a trade in 2020. The Penguins have a 2023 first-round pick, but the probability pool is very slim.

    This should be a trade-off to support the current NHL roster (without looking to the future) to keep Vancouver working from the end, while Horvat will almost certainly be a lease exclusively by the Penguins.

Columbus Blue Jackets

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    COLUMBUS, OHIO - NOV 17: Columbus Blue Jackets' #34 Cole Sillinger celebrates his first-period goal with his teammates during a game against the Montreal Canadiens at the Nationwide Arena on November 17, 2022, in Columbus, Ohio.  (Photo by Ben Jackson/NHLI via Getty Images)

    via Getty Images Ben Jackson/NHLI

    Ok, I know what you’re thinking here.

    The Columbus Blue Jackets suck, they’re not going anywhere this season, and they have no reason to try to add a pending free agent in a season like this.

    Listen to me. Give me a chance. Please.

    The Blue Jackets may look bad, but it’s also not exactly a remade suit. They’ve had a lot of brutal injury chances this season, goalkeeping hurt them and things didn’t go as planned.

    But their off-season shows that they are now a team looking to win; otherwise they wouldn’t have signed Johnny Gaudreau as a free agent. They also have a general manager at Jarmo Kekäläinen who is not afraid to be bold and act out of the ordinary.

    He showed it a few years ago, when he kept free agents Artemi Panarin and Sergei Bobrovsky despite not being in the playoff position at the time, and then went all-out by adding Matt Duchene and Ryan Dzingel to the deadline. Then off this season, he surprised everyone by signing Gaudreau (and Erik Gudbranson).

    Aside from the goalie, Columbus’ other big gap in the lineup is in the center.

    Cole Sillinger is the most intriguing young player in his position, but his development has taken a step back this season and they don’t have any other potential top-line options in the near future.

    If Columbus can deliver a package that Vancouver likes and persuade Horvat to re-sign (hey, he got Gaudreau to sign), it’s a lots interesting option

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