The past few seasons have been rough for the Vancouver Canucks. The team finished this season with a record of 35-36-11 , 5th in the Pacific Division. And the Canucks still have a battle ahead of them. Vancouver has 6 defensemen going onto free agency (2 UFA, 4 RFA) and 6 forwards going into free agency (1 UFA, 5 RFA) in this season alone.
But they have a blessing of getting the 10th overall pick in this 2019 Entry Draft. Now the question is who will they draft?
Today, let’s talk about 2 possibilities the Canucks can go. They can either go for a productive forward or a strong defenseman. Either way, the Canucks will need help building their team back to one that can see the post season.
Philip Broberg, Defenseman
Philip Broberg is a 6’3″, 203 lbs left handed defenseman from Sweden. Broberg is a durable defensemen, he bounced around among Swedish teams. He played for 7 teams throughout this season with a total of 75 games with 34 points.
As a defenseman, Broberg has a powerful stride. He’s been described as “too good to play in the U20 Swedish League” (x) at just 17 years old. His two-way capabilities and high hockey IQ set him apart and make him an excellent selection for the Vancouver Canucks.
Vancouver is going to be missing a chunk of players this season and another 5 defensemen up for free agency next season. The only defensemen they have locked up through 2020-2021 is Quintin Hughes who is on an entry-level contract. Broberg is still signed to another season in the SHL so he wouldn’t begin his NHL career until 2019-2020. But he would bring revival to this struggling team.
Cole Caufield is a 5’7″, 163 lbs centre from the US. Caufield is a productive centre that played on 3 teams this season with a total of 99 games with an astounding 159 points. The bulk of Caufield’s points came from goals, of his 159 points, 115 were goals.
When it comes to Caufield’s game he is unbelievable on skates. He’s a smooth skater and possesses unbelievable goal scoring abilities. When playing with the U.S. National U18 Team, Caufield wore an “A” and absolutely dominated on the ice. Caufield had 100 points (72 goals and 28 assists) in just 64 games.
Teamed up with a player like Elias Pettersson, who had more assists than goals, would boost the Canucks so much further and maybe into a post-season appearance. Vancouver will have 6 forwards going free agency this summer and 4 more coming up after next season so restocking with young talent will help them in the long run. Caufield is already committed to a season at University of Wisconsin so the Canucks would have to wait a season before seeing him on the ice.
The Canucks do have good players waiting in the wings for the upcoming seasons. With Quintin Hughes and Elias Pettersson leading the young resurgence, adding one more young player can be the key to success.
Featured Image: NHL PR