The Vancouver Canucks have announced a multi-year extension—expected to be three seasons—for GM Jim Benning, keeping the executive in charge for the foreseeable future. In a release, Canucks’ President of Hockey Operations Trevor Linden explained his confidence in Benning:
With Jim’s guidance and leadership we have put the building blocks in place for a bright future. We have strong internal alignment and I am excited to continue working towards our ultimate goal of bringing a Stanley Cup to Vancouver.
Benning has been at the helm for Vancouver since 2014, and has gone down several different paths the last few years. First trading away some established names like Ryan Kesler and Kevin Bieksa, before making some questionable additions like Erik Gudbranson and Loui Eriksson. While his tenure has certainly not been accepted by all parts of the fan base, the start of a sort of rebuild over the last 12 months has Vancouver headed in the right direction.
Last trade deadline, the team dealt Jannik Hansen and Alex Burrows for a pair of interesting prospects, and now they seem poised to have a similar sell-off. Thomas Vanek, Michael Del Zotto and others could be on their way out, as suggested by Linden in a letter to season ticket holders today, when he states that they will be adding some prospects and building towards the future over the next few months.
Moving forward, the next several months will be important as we add even more prospects to our pool and build on the positive steps we have seen this year. We still need to be patient, but I am excited about our journey ahead together.
The Canucks have an exciting pair of young players in Brock Boeser and Bo Horvat, and a supporting cast of solid developing talent. For now, the plan will stay in place with the same man at the wheel, guiding Vancouver through the next part of their rebuild.