The Vancouver Canucks were due to turn in their season opening roster and cap totals at 2 pm Pacific time today. That deadline has passed, and it’s usually a wee bit before an announcement is made. Canucks General Manager Jim Benning held a lengthy media availability Monday, before Head Coach Travis Green held a very short one, as he was rushing off to join management for meetings ahead of the deadline.
Alex Chiasson, a net-front presence on the power play in particular, skated this morning on a line with JT Miller and Elias Pettersson, suggesting that the PTO’er (Professional Try-Out) was or would be part of the 23-man roster. However, Benning was elusive on whether Chiasson had signed a deal or would before the roster deadline. There were cap mechanizations to work through to get down to that number, which could include putting a “day-to-day” Brock Boeser on IR for a short time.
Benning didn’t rule out making a trade in the short term to get his roster cleaned up.
“I could make a trade here before the deadline, the 2-o’clock deadline to set the roster too, so I’m talking to different teams, we’re looking at different things, we’ll just have to wait and see,” he said.
On Chiasson, Benning said “We’ll see in the next day or so.”
On whether he’d be on the opening roster, ” I’m not gonna say anything right now, we’re gonna talk about it, I think there’s a chance that we want to sign him, but we’re gonna go down that road when I talk to Travis after practice. We’d have to waive a player to get him on the roster,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Vancouver Canucks put absentee defenceman Travis Hamonic on waivers Sunday.
“We needed to do that to carve out a roster spot for ourselves,” Benning explained. “He’s cleared waivers now, it just buys us more time, we save money on the cap and we get a roster spot to get through the trip. He’s still working through some personal matters and we’re gonna loan him to Abbotsford. Once he feels he has the personal matters cleared up, he comes in and he can start skating with them and be ready to join the team when we get back.”
Benning stated that all of the players on the Vancouver Canucks NHL roster would be vaccinated to start the season. When asked about his AHL roster, alluding to the potential addition of Hamonic, it got interesting. Feel free to read between the lines.
“Well, all of our players down there are vaccinated, so that’s a question that we’d have to think about and look into, so I don’t really have an answer for that right now,” Benning said.
The Covid situation for forward Brandon Sutter is unfortunately more clear cut. He’s still experiencing long-haul symptoms from his Covid diagnosis in the spring.
“He’s gonna be out for awhile. He’s not gonna be back anytime soon,” Benning stated. “He’s experiencing some of the symptoms from Covid. He still has some issues he’s dealing with.”
Benning did have one level of good news regarding Sutter, in that the issues did not involve his heart.
“He’s gone through a number of tests … he does not have myocarditis, no he doesn’t.”
Updates coming here when the roster announcement arrives.
Stand around and wait. And Happy Thanksgiving.