So this will be a new article series on the Vancouver Canucks here at the Area 51 Sports Network.
Canucks Journal will be similar to Avid Thoughts and Nathan Durec’s Vancouver Whitecaps Terminal City Thoughts. Obviously, we will only focus on the Canucks. I’m not sure how often I will do these but ideally once a week during the Canucks season. These articles will be going over the latest transactions and rumours surrounding the team and of course, I will give my thoughts.
By the way, Canucks Journal is a working title. Sure it sounds lame but it is sticking for now. If anyone has a better name for these, I’ll happily take suggestions.
Let’s get into it.
Canucks trade Riley Stillman for Josh Bloom and that is a dub
So just as I was about to start this article, the Canucks made a trade!
Riley Stillman is on his way to the Buffalo Sabres for 2021 third round pick Josh Bloom. This just came out of nowhere.
What makes this deal surprising was there was interest for Riley Stillman. It is even more surprising that the Canucks managed to get a prospect back instead of a late pick and the fact that the Sabres took his full 1.35 million dollar cap hit.
So this is a dub. *Insert Robbie Lyle of ArsenalFanTV dub meme here bossman.*
Let’s face it, Stillman is not a good defenceman and is probably not even an NHL defenceman. Getting rid of him for a prospect with some upside is impressive. So in the end, (well the end so far) Jason Dickinson got the Canucks what looks like a B level prospect.
Bloom currently has 58 points has 58 points in 59 games in the OHL with the Saginaw Spirit and North Bay Battalion. Here is the scouting report on Bloom and there is lots to like. I think he can make the NHL and he could be a decent bottom-six winger.
Bloom can really rip the puck. He’s got a solid shot and decent hands. At 6’2″, he also isn’t afraid to get in front of the net for tip-ins and redirections.
Canucks trade Vitali Kravtsov for basically nothing
Now the heading is no disrespect to Will Lockwood or the 2026 seventh round pick.
I wrote about how much I liked Lockwood in the past and he has done alright with the Abbotsford Canucks but his ceiling is a fourth liner. As for the 2026 seventh rounder, we all know seventh rounders making it to the NHL are very unlikely.
But Lockwood and the pick are chump change to the New York Rangers for Vitali Kravtsov. He was drafted by the Rangers ninth overall in 2018 and has not panned out…yet. Kravtsov is a skilled winger with some size and the Canucks game against the Dallas Stars is beginning in less than half an hour as I write this and he will be in the lineup.
Kravtsov needed a fresh start and has had a rocky relationship with Rangers management over the years. Rangers GM Chris Drury and Kravtsov never saw eye to eye and Drury reportedly ripped him during the 2020 bubble playoffs in front of his teammates. (Drury was assistant GM back then.) Apparently he has wanted out of the Big Apple since prior to the 2021-22 season. There were trade talks but a move never happened. As a result, the Rangers loaned Kravtsov to Chelyabinsk of the KHL. Last summer, he surprisingly signed a one-year deal to return to New York.
He might not become the player he was highly touted to be when he broke the KHL’s rookie scoring record but he should look at his time in Vancouver as a second chance to prove he can be an NHL player.
The fact that he has got a good stride with his 6’3″ and has got some skill will impress head coach Rick Tocchet.
Kravstov has three goals and three assists in six games this season and was eighth in Corsi For among Rangers players who played at least 100 minutes with 52.80%.
Even if Kravstov doesn’t pan out in Vancouver, the Canucks can’t lose this trade.
JT Miller goes from trade speculation to injured in 12 hours
JT Miller is always a hot topic among Canucks fans.
On Sunday night Shayna Goldman of The Athletic reported that Miller could potentially be moved prior to the deadline. Canucks Twitter used to pray for times like this.
But things got…complicated. Miller apparently tweaked something Saturday against the Boston Bruins and will be out week to week with a lower body injury and didn’t join the team in Dallas.
You might say the Canucks are bluffing and Miller is just sitting out because a trade is happening soon. But his agent says otherwise.
So much for a trade. You also have to wonder if Miller was playing with an injury for some time.
Given Miller’s seven-year, eight million dollar a year extension kicks in next season, it would make sense for a teams to stay away. Plus no one is trading for an injured player. A lot of big names have been traded already such as Ryan O’Reilly and Timo Meier so other teams must have changed their plans. That being said, the Canucks could still trade Miller if they wanted to before his no-move clause kicks in on July 1.
With Miller out, the centres behind Elias Pettersson are Nils Åman, Jack Studnicka and Aatu Räty. ( Räty could be good one day) So it helps the tank at least.
Alright, I’m writing this part after the Canucks beat the Dallas Stars 6-5 in overtime. I did not see all of the game but we might as well call Andrei Kuzmenko the Anti-Tank Machine or something because he got the overtime winner and ruined the tank again.
I really how hate how NHL reviews take forever because they spent about five minutes reviewing Anthony Beauvillier’s entry on Kuzmenko’s OT winner. You also can’t help feel happy for Kuzmenko because he was smiling so much when it was confirmed his winning goal stands.
Thatcher Demko looked good in his return except for Jamie Benn’s goal whenthe puck squeezed between his legs. There were so many odd man rushes and breakaways and Demko looked sharp. Demko was all like: “Yeah I’m thinking I’m back.”
So let me know what I can do for this new Canucks Journal series. What kind of Canucks content do you want me to write and in what way?