Canucks Stand Pat at Deadline

Eric MacLachlanCorrespondent IFebruary 26, 2008

There are going to be quite a few unhappy fans in Vancouver with the fact that Dave Nonis did not pull off a monumental deal at the deadline.

With names like Brad Richards, Mats Sundin, and Olli Jokinen on the block, Vancouver was rumored to be in contention for all of them and Nonis did not pull the trigger.

I can clearly say, he did the right thing.

If you look at the Richards deal, the Stars did not give up a lot, but had to give up Mike Smith, who Tampa is hoping will be a No. 1 guy.

The Canucks do not have another goaltender capable of starting at the NHL level.

Other than for Richards, it would most likely have taken prospects and draft picks to get somebody.

I would have no problem giving up draft picks, but the prospects would be a problem. Cory Schneider is the only prospect that I, and most likely Nonis, would give up.

The other prospects who would be asked for, Edler, Bourdon, Grabner, and Raymond are not guys you trade for a rental who may not even get you past the first or second round, then bang, he's a free agent.

Bourdon, who has not developed quite as quickly as the others, is still a top-rate prospect, and with Edler and Bieksa could help anchor the Canucks blueline for years to come.

Up front, Raymond has been a sparkplug for a struggling offence, while Grabner will be a go-to guy in a couple seasons, and down the road, these four guys will provide more for this team then any deadline acquisition.

Even with Richards or Jokinen, or Sundin, (yes, I know Sundin was not really on the market) this team was not guarenteed to go anywhere anyways. 

The Canucks made a minor upgrade by trading Matt Cooke for Matt Pettinger.

Pettinger plays the same physical style, but is a bit younger and has more offensive upside. Also both players were in similar situations, as both had fallen out of favor with their respective head coaches.

The way this Canucks team is playing, they could make some noise without another scorer.

Just ask Calgary.

They have a similar line-up, great defence, great goaltending, and a lack of depth up front which cost Calgary in the finals, but they did get there.

Yes, scoring is still the biggest problem for this Vancouver Canucks team, but Nonis was not willing to pay the price to get a scorer who is not guarenteed to be a cure-all anyways. 

Just ask Nashville how it worked for them with Forsberg last year. 

Even without a scorer, this team should still make the playoffs, and if this team stays healthy and gets everyone working together at the right time, who knows what could happen.