As expected, defenseman Travis Hamonic’s tryout with the Vancouver Canucks has proven successful. The team has announced a one-year, $1.25MM contract with Hamonic. TSN’s Rick Dhaliwal adds that Hamonic’s contract contains a No-Movement Clause.
Hamonic, 30, is not the player he once was, but he can still be an effective contributor and a great value for the Canucks so long as he can stay healthy. Hamonic has been a workhorse ever since entering the league, but in 2019-20, his tenth NHL season, he started to show signs of deterioration. The veteran missed 20 games due to various injuries and his play was effected even when he was healthy. He also has not seen game action since in close to a year after hitting the injured reserve in February and then opting out of the postseason.
Fortunately, Vancouver does not need to hand Hamonic major workload, at least not right away. With a deep stable of defensemen including rookie standout Quinn Hughes, new addition Nate Schmidt, and veterans Tyler Myers and Alexander Edler, Hamonic has time to settle in. Myers, a fellow right-handed shot, and Schmidt, who prefers to play on his off-hand side, may even slot in above Hamonic to begin the year, allowing the veteran to get up to speed with bottom pair minutes.
Don’t confuse the late timing of his signing as hesitation on the Canucks’ part, either. Hamonic’s signing, as well as the value of his contract, are strategic moves designed to take full advantage of forward Micheal Ferland’s LTIR placement and give the team maximum cap flexibility entering the new year. Hamonic has been linked to the Canucks for some time and this was always the result. Vancouver fans should be excited about the further strengthening of their defense corps.