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Canucks Daily: Japanese Abbotsford, Canada-based Trade Rumours

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Vancouver Canucks, Yushiroh Hirano
Yushiroh Hirano, seen here with the ECHL's Wheeling Nailers, will play for the Vancouver Canucks affiliate in Abbotsford.

The Vancouver Canucks organization’s AHL affiliate in Abbotsford has re-signed the rarest of players. Yushiroh Hirano, the first Japanese-born player to score a goal in American Hockey league history, just signed a one year, two-way AHL-ECHL contract. The goal came this past January 22nd in a 5-3 home win against the San Diego Gulls and oddly enough, was the fastest goal in franchise history having been scored just ten-seconds into the game.

Only two other Japanese players have suited up in AHL history; neither scored a goal.

In 30 games, Hirano had five goals and seven assists for the Abby Canucks last season.

Takahito Suzuki was the first Japanese player to score a goal in the ECHL, he had 24 of them for the Charlotte Checkers during the 2002-’03 season. It hasn’t happened at the NHL level.

Only one Japanese player has ever made it to the NHL. Can you name him? (Answer at bottom). He wasn’t with the Vancouver Canucks obviously, but he did play in the Pacific Division.

Calgary Flame-out

What the heck is going on in Calgary where Flames General Manager Brad Treliving has his hands full, but a roster potentially empty of stars.

Sportsnet reporter Eric Francis told a radio audience he expected the Flames and Matthew Tkachuk to part ways soon. This on the heels of Johnny Gaudreau’s free agency departure. Apparently Calgary will soon begin accepting offers for Tkachuk and the list of suitors will be long.

Cohort Steve Macfarlane sheds more light and context on the situation and presents other possibilities. Maybe Tkachuk is playing hardball for a new deal? Or maybe this ends quickly. Here’s what comes next —  Calgary Hockey Now coverage.

Speaking of Trades and Free Agents

Montreal Hockey Now: Sources tell our Montreal bureau that Christian Dvorak is likely on the way out as the Montreal Canadiens look to make their next move.

Back to our pals at Sportsnet, where they present their list of the top-10 remaining UFAs, the latest news and rumours, including info on Phil Kessel, Patrice Bergeron, and Nazem Kadri.

Here’s more on the Bergeron intrigue from the lads at Boston Hockey Now. Did new Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery accidentally spill the beans.

More Out East

We’ve been talking quite a bit lately about the importance of keeping the goaltending cupboards fully stocked, and apparently no one knows that better than a netminder. Pittsburgh Penguins GM Ron Hextall, a very fine, former, and angry NHL goalie has stocked the Penguins’ organization with crease prospects. NHL calibre soon? Joel Blomqvist is one name. Here’s the full story on these Pittsburgh Penguins prospects.

The Washington Capitals have a new look with the addition of Ryan Strome among others. The Capitals lines.

New York Islanders boss man Lou Lamoriello was in the thick of trade rumours last season for Vladimir Tarasenko of the St. Louis Blues and again at the 2022 NHL Draft for JT Miller of the Vancouver Canucks. Here’s the New York Islanders angle and analysis.

Answer

Tokyo-born goaltender Yutaka Fukufuji made four appearances in net for the Los Angeles Kings back in January of the 2006-’07 season. He lost three of them with one no-decision.

Have a happy hump day!

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