The Vancouver Canucks have until the March 3 deadline to make all the trades they’d like — or hope — to, but there’s reason to believe the team could strike sooner.
Jim Rutherford, Vancouver’s president of hockey operations, has been known to jump early on the trade deadline in his career.
In 2016 with the Penguins, he acquired Carl Hagelin more than a month before the deadline, and he had a big impact on the HBK line en route to the Cup. In 2017, he got out a week ahead of the deadline to acquire Ron Hainsey as his defensive depth pick up. In 2018-19, he made several impactful moves well before the deadline day.
Even going all the way back to his Carolina days, Rutherford acquired Doug Weight more than a month before the deadline in that ’06 Cup-winning season.
So as we wait and see what happens next to this Canucks roster, we should be mindful that Rutherford may be one of the first GMs across the league to be active.
First up, Bo Horvat?
“I think this has intensified this week,” Elliotte Friedman said on Friday’s 32 Thoughts Podcast. “I don’t know that it’s going to happen for sure, but I believe some teams have stepped up and indicated they’re serious.
“Nobody has denied to me that there has been some intensifications.”