Highly touted defence prospect Jack Rathbone, who’s already had a taste of the big show, signed a one-way deal with the Vancouver Canucks, the team reported on Friday. The deal is for two years at $850,000 per season.
Canucks General Manager Patrik Allvin also announced the re-signings of forward William Lockwood and defenceman Noah Juulsen. The two signed two-way contracts. Both will get $750,000 while playing at the NHL level. Juulsen earns at a $250,000 rate while in the AHL while Lockwood garnered a $125,000 minor league deal. Both players signed for one season.
Rathbone started last season with the Vancouver Canucks, playing in nine games and failing to tally a point, before playing the next thirty-nine with the American League Abbotsford Canucks and piling up 40. He missed a little less than a month of action after suffering an upper-body injury on a violent hit along the end boards in Bakersfield by Condors forward Colton Sceviour on February 16th. He returned in March to help the baby Canucks rally to make the AHL playoffs.
Rathbone, who starred for two seasons at Harvard University and was drafted by Vancouver in the 4th-round of the 2017 NHL Draft, played eight games for the Vancouver Canucks in 2020-’21 and picked up a goal and two assists.
His lone NHL goal came in Edmonton on May 6, 2021 against Oilers goalie Mikko Koskinen.
If he pans out as expected, Rathbone gives Vancouver plenty of depth and options on the left-side of the blueline behind Quinn Hughes and Oliver Ekman-Larsson. Depending on the level of Rathbone’s success, it’s almost inevitable that we’ll start to hear the “will Ekman-Larsson waive his no-move clause” chatter.
Physical winger Lockwood, a 3rd-round NHL Draft pick of the Vancouver Canucks in 2016, played 46 games for Abbotsford last season and collected nine goals, 25 points, 38 penalty minutes and finished a plus-7. He also appeared in 13 games for Vancouver last season and recorded 13 shots and nine penalty minutes. The 24-year-old is still seeking his first NHL point.
Juulsen played 50 regular season AHL games last season in the town he grew up in, tallying 16 points (3-13-16). The 25-year-old right-shot D-man was originally drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in the 1st-round of the 2015 NHL Draft and has 56 NHL games under his belt, including eight for Vancouver last season. He has scored two NHL goals and added eight assists in a career that has included games for the Canadiens and the Florida Panthers.
Juulsen’s first NHL goal came on Long Island against New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak on March 2, 2018.