Vancouver Canucks defenseman Nikita Tryamkin is exercising a clause in his contract to deny Vancouver’s request to send him to the AHL, reports Iain MacIntyre of the Vancouver Sun. GM Jim Benning commented on the decision:
“We’ve explored that. We’ve talked to him and his agent and he has said no. In a perfect world, we’d like him to get some games (in the minors). But it is what it is. He is working hard in practice and doing extra work.”
Tryamkin was drafted in the third round (66th overall) by the Canucks in 2014 in his third year of eligibility. He spent parts of the last four years in the KHL before signing a two year, entry-level contract worth $925K per season late last year. The deal contains a European Assignment Clause which means he can veto any attempts to send him to the AHL. Benning noted that the clause was a requirement in order for Tryamkin to sign.
After signing last year, the Canucks put the 6’7 blueliner into the lineup right away, playing in 13 games to finish the season. He had a goal and an assist in those games along with 31 hits and 23 blocked shots while averaging 17:31 per game. However, he has not yet played this season as he sits eighth on the depth chart on Vancouver’s back end.
The team has expressed concern with Tryamkin’s fitness level, something that isn’t going to improve without getting into some game action; there’s only so much work that can be done off the ice. They were hopeful that the 22 year old would be open to a temporary conditioning stint in Utica but it would appear that he’ll remain in the press box in Vancouver until injuries arise, hardly an ideal situation for the Canucks or for Tryamkin.