Sedins Could Face Pressure to Accept a Trade

by | Sep 10, 2017 | Soapbox | 6 comments

Entering the final season of their contracts, the Sedins could face calls from Vancouver Canucks fans to waive their no-movement clauses.

Long-time Vancouver Canucks stars Daniel and Henrik Sedin will be unrestricted free agents next summer. After spending their entire 16-season NHL careers in Vancouver, 2017-18 could be their final campaign with the Canucks.

The twins turn 37 on Sept. 26 and their best years are behind them. Daniel’s 44-point effort in 2016-17 was his lowest in a non-lockout year since tallying 31 points in 2002-03. Henrik’s 50 points matched his 2013-14 output under then-coach John Tortorella’ defense-first system and was his lowest since his 42-point campaign in 2003-04.

Approaching the twilight of their professional careers, the Sedins are the Canucks’ greatest players (with all due respect to Pavel Bure and Trevor Linden), though it will take some time for their harshest critics – many of them Canucks fans – to accept that fact. They’re the franchise leaders in most offensive categories.

Given their pending free-agent status and the Canucks’ current rebuilding process, it’s doubtful the Sedins factor into the club’s plans beyond this season. Management could simply part company with the twins next July. However, they could also attempt to trade one or both before the Feb. 26, 2018 trade deadline.

Daniel Sedin recently said he and his brother do not want to be traded. Indeed, they appear keen to retire as Canucks. General manager Jim Benning claims he has no intention of trading the duo unless they ask to be moved.

There’s no reason to doubt the sincerity of either side on that issue. However, if the Sedins have a decent season and the Canucks are out of playoff contention come February, a postseason contender could come calling with a package offer for one or both players that could speed up Vancouver’s rebuilding process.

That might persuade Benning to approach the twins and gauge their willingness to accept a trade to a possible Stanley Cup contender. Even if Benning stands by his pledge not to move the Sedins unless they approach him first, any report claiming he received a tantalizing offer will prompt many Vancouver fans and pundits to call upon the Canucks GM to convince the Sedins to accept a trade. 

There will be those who feel the Sedins should remain loyal to the Canucks and finish their careers with the only NHL team they’ve known. Others, however, will insist they “do the right thing” and “put the team first” by accepting a trade.

It’s the same scenario Hall of Fame center Mats Sundin, the Sedins’ fellow countryman and one-time teammate, faced during his final season with the Toronto Maple Leafs a decade ago.

Like the Sedins, Sundin was nearing both the end of his contract and NHL playing career, the bulk of which he’d spent with the Leafs.

As the Leafs floundered through a disappointing 2007-08 season, there were calls for Sundin to be shipped to a Cup contender for a package of draft picks and young talent. The Detroit Red Wings, then a league powerhouse that went on to win the Stanley Cup that year, were believed to be among the interested parties.

Sundin, however, wasn’t comfortable with being a rental player and refused to waive his no-trade clause. Rather than earn praise for his loyalty from Leafs fans, many were infuriated, accusing their captain and long-time franchise player of selfishness.

The Sedins can expect similar treatment if they follow Sundin’s example, especially if the Canucks are out of contention by the trade deadline. 

If the Sedins insist on finishing the season, and their careers, with the Canucks, they’ve earned that right. No one should fault them for using their no-movement clauses in their contracts to stay in Vancouver.

Linden and Benning didn’t sign the Sedins to those deals but they have obviously decided to honor them. Judging by their recent remarks, they feel the twins are still an important part of the team this season.

Perhaps if the Canucks were the dominant club they were earlier in this decade, there wouldn’t be any suggestion of the club trading their fading franchise players. 

If the Canucks exceed expectations in 2017-18 and contend for a playoff berth, there probably won’t be much pressure from the Vancouver faithful to shop the Sedins. But if the Canucks are out of contention by February, those calls will get louder.

Leafs fans eventually forgave Sundin, who is considered among the greatest players in franchise history. Canucks fans will also do the same for the Sedins if they also refused to waive their no-trade clauses. But in the short term, the potential end of the twins’ long career in Vancouver could become a rocky one. 

 








6 Comments

  1. Canucks have never had a player of note play their entire career with the franchise and it’s fair that the Sedins do get that chance. They have meant so much to the franchise and the city that they should be respected by a decision to finish their careers here.

    I hope they play one more year and two very cap friendly deals next season. They are not done yet and have a lot offer the team even if it isn’t in the form of 70+ point seasons.

  2. Good players but not great Boston showed there weakness in 2011. If I were Vancouver I would get what I could get and let them have a chance at the title.

    • If refs didn’t play in Bruins jersey in game nr7, we would have a different story

      • Most people blame the refs when they lose the facts are the Sedins were man handled and looked soft sorry but that’s what the world saw. Like I said there good just not great.

    • Yeah that series took a decidedly Boston swing very quickly. This comes from someone who is a die-hard Bruins fan living on the West Coast.

      Game 7 not withstanding, most of those games should have been Canuck wins. Sure, the Sedins are not the greatest players to ever lace up skates in the NHL, but they are Vancouver heroes and deserve to retire as Canucks.

  3. You can never say never, but I would be beyond shocked if the Sedin’s are moved in fact just the opposite, they will be resigned for at least 1 more season eventually but when all is said & dome they probably play thru the 2019-20 season.

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