With the Canucks sitting at the top of the Pacific Division, it would stand to reason that Vancouver would be buyers heading into the upcoming trade deadline. However, Postmedia’s Patrick Johnston posits that when it comes to defenseman Chris Tanev at least, the team should at least consider moving him. The 30-year-old has long had injury troubles but has managed to play in every game this season while logging nearly 20 minutes a night. He’s on an expiring contract with a $4.45MM cap hit and with several contenders looking for defensive help, he’d fetch a good return. Part of the logic of holding onto him in the past has been that they’d have sold low on moving him. This is their chance to move him for closer to market value but given the role he’s filling on a team that’s squarely in the playoff hunt, could Vancouver afford to deal him?
Elsewhere out West:
- For the time being at least, the Flames have abandoned the experiment of using center Mikael Backlund on the wing, notes Postmedia’s Kristen Anderson. The team started out using the veteran there back in December but Backlund indicated to interim head coach Geoff Ward that he’s not the most comfortable away from the middle. Calgary has been looking for winger help for a while now and with Backlund staying at center now, they likely won’t be able to fill that vacancy from within which was the likely impetus for trying him there in the first place.
- Predators defenseman Ryan Ellis is with the team on their current road trip but is unlikely to play, suggests Paul Skrbina of The Tennessean. He’s working his way back from a concussion sustained back at the Winter Classic on January 1st. With Nashville currently on the outside looking in at a playoff spot, he’d certainly be a welcome addition but if this holds true, the earliest he’ll be able to play is February 13th.