Latest Canucks and Stars Speculation – April 7, 2018

by | Apr 7, 2018 | Rumors | 23 comments

Another look at possible offseason moves by the Vancouver Canucks and Dallas Stars in your NHL rumor mill.

The Vancouver Canucks could be interested in Toronto Maple Leafs center Tyler Bozak if he’s available via free agency. (Photo via NHL Images)


THE ATHLETIC: JD Burke cited a recent report by News 1130’s Rick Dhaliwal claiming the Vancouver Canucks could have interest in Toronto Maple Leafs center Tyler Bozak if he becomes available as an unrestricted free agent this summer. He feels the Canucks should be wary of signing the 32-year-old Leaf, pointing out he’s at the stage in his career where decline is inevitable. If they do pursue Bozak, Burke feels a one-year deal worth around $3 million would be better than a more expensive three- or four-year contract.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Agreed. With the Sedins announcing their retirement, the Canucks will have over $20 million to invest in bringing in one or two veteran players to act as mentors for their promising youngsters and take some pressure off them. However, they must avoid repeating the mistake they made two years ago with Loui Eriksson, who’s signed through 2021-22 with a $6-million annual salary-cap hit. A one- or two-year deal worth between $3-$4 million annually for someone such as Bozak would be more reasonable. 



DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Given the injury history of Stars starting goaltender Ben Bishop, Mike Heika believes general manager Jim Nill will have an important decision to make regarding the backup position. One option could be re-signing Kari Lehtonen, but he struggled in his recent starts. Nill could also look to one of his goaltending prospects or perhaps via free agency for someone such as Toronto’s Calvin Pickard or Winnipeg’s Michael Hutchinson.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: After falling out of playoff contention this season, some changes are likely in store for the Stars this summer. One of them could be bolstering their goaltending depth. I wouldn’t be surprised if Nill pursues someone like PIckard or Hutchinson. 

THE ATHLETIC: In a recent mailbag segment, Sean Shapiro addressed some questions from Stars fans regarding possible offseason moves. He’s not a fan of pursuing former NHL winger Ilya Kovalchuk, who turns 35 next week and hasn’t played more than 60 games in a season since splitting 2012-13 between the NHL and KHL. Shapiro also said he’d be shocked if winger Val Nichushkin, who’s spent the past two seasons in the KHL, isn’t skating with the Stars next season.

Asked about the possibility of the Stars perhaps landing Montreal Canadiens forward Alex Galchenyuk, Shapiro acknowledged the recent trade history between the two clubs and didn’t rule it out. He also “wouldn’t be opposed to packaging younger bottom-six players to get a legitimate top-six scoring option. I’m a big proponent of giving younger players an opportunity, but I’m also a realist and believe the Stars need to do something to bolster the offense with a bona fide option.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I agree with Shapiro’s take on Kovalchuk. They’re better off looking at younger, perhaps more affordable depth options. Bringing back Nichushkin could help provided his game has matured over the last two years.

The Canadiens’ biggest needs are a top-line center and perhaps another top-four defenseman, which probably doesn’t make Dallas a destination for Galchenyuk. Perhaps Nill can package a couple of promising younger players in hopes of enticing a club in need of shedding salary into parting with a top-six winger. 



  1. GM Nill should call GM Bergevin and offer Spezza & the rights to Nichushkin for Galchenyuk. Heck throw in Hanzal for Hudon even.

    MTL gets a #1 center for Drouin and with their cap space lob $ at Nichushkin.

    DAL gets Galchenyuk who can slot 2nd line wing and free up some cash to make a pitch for JT.

    • Spezza and Hanzal are not #1 Centers

    • 1-2 yr deals for any and all free agent signings pls. Preferably 1yr with no ntc so as to flip them at the deadline

    • Spezza a #1 centre? Danault has the same number of goals (and only 1 fewer assists) as Spezza in 25 fewer games; Hudon has 2 more goals (and assists) in 5 fewer games; as bad as his seaosn has been, Drouin has 5 more goals (and 14 more assists) in 1 less game.

      Thanks for a morning laugh

      • Well said. MB should not trade Galchenyuk. Patches is on the block though, so think about him in any trades with Mtl. Spezza and/or Hanzal are not going to Mtl except in a massively on-sided trade in Mtl’s favour. Neither player is what Mtl wants or needs.

  2. Bozak being 32, why would he except a one year contract anywhere? He wouldn’t, he’ll be looking for term which will potentially bring down his season average. I think he’ll sign a 3 or 4 year contract somewhere.

  3. As a HNIC fan, it be nice if they switched their 2nd game tonight to the ST.L at Colorado game; after all isn’t that the only game that everybody wants to watch.

    • Nope, I want to watch McDavid win the scoring title and the Sedins’ last game.

      • So you think Kucherov is going to get 7pts tonight, the Sedin last game at home was the only one that matter.
        I could see Edmonton and Vancouver fans wanting to watch, CBC could televise that game for the West and the rest of the Country could watch a game that has importance to the result. Mute point on my part regardless because it isn’t going to happen.
        Doesn’t impact me because of my center ice package. I’ll watch McKinnon go for the Hart.

      • Got a flat of Sneaky Weasels and some thick angus rib steaks ready to watch Canucks finish this dog crap of a season on a high note. Hopefully next year is better

    • All kinds of territorial rights issues in play there, neither the CBC nor Sportsnet have market rights for 2 US-based teams. Buy the NHL Center Ice package, dirt cheap. I bought the Rodgers NHL Live package this year so I can watch anywhere I have an internet connection. Worth every penny.

      • Yeah it’s almost as good as
        Streaming it for free on one of a hundred different sites.

      • Striker …. you shouldn’t have had to pay for that NHL Centre Ice package …. unless you have the basic Rogers TV package …. it comes free with all other packages …. we have it free …. all my friends have it free

      • We live in the Shaw cable world or Telus optic TV but under contract with Shaw at present.

  4. Please send your prayers and positive thoughts to all of the people affected by the terrible accident involving the Humboldt Broncos. Really tough to hear about a loss like this but when kids are involved it is amplified. May God bless the entire community and especially all of the families and friends who are dealing with this painful tragedy.

    • The interview with Babs brought tears to my eyes…. this is truly tragic

  5. Vancouver should trade their top 6 pick for ROR.

    • Right after Buffalo trades their 1st for Sven Baertschi

  6. Hi All….Seeking info re Brandon Pirri …. why has he only been brought up now …. tearing up AHL…. at just a smidge over NHL league minimum …. couldn’t he have been brought up before now … I know he’s streaky …. 3G in 2 games … then stretches of nothing……. but at his Cap hit … $650K…. why didn’t any team look to add him at trade deadline for playoff depth? What would he have cost …. 5th rounder? He’s UFA and cheap …. and has to be better than the worst 4th liner on EACH and EVERY team …. is he a cancer in the dressing room? Has he slept with players wives and/or coaches wives? Your insight on this is appreciated

    • The problem with pirri is if he isn’t scoring you might as well put the mascot on the Ice, think William nylander only worse when he doesn’t have the puck

      • I get that but no matter what … on his play alone he is better than ANY TEAMs worst 4th liner with a potential to score timely goals … that’s why I (as well as #1 son) thought there must be a dressing room issue … or that he’s a wife hound????

      • Lol maybe I’ve never heard anything like that

      • Pathetic^