NHL Lockout: Where to Find Your Vancouver Canucks During the Work Stoppage
Earlier tonight should have been the Canucks' season opener.
As you all know, due to the stalled CBA negotiations, the first two weeks of the season have been cancelled. If a deal isn't agreed upon within the next week, the NHL will likely cancel another larger chunk, risking the loss of an entire season.
But just because the NHL is in hiatus doesn't mean there aren't players to follow and games to watch.
The following takes a look at where we can find the Canucks during the lockout.
Until today, the Canucks were the only NHL team that hadn't had a player sign in Europe.
But with Dale Weise joining the Tilburg Trappers of the Dutch Elite League, they no longer hold that title.
For now, Weise is the lone Canuck to venture overseas, but as the lockout goes on, players to watch include Roberto Luongo, Henrik and Daniel Sedin, Alex Edler, Manny Malhotra and Jannik Hansen.
Usually, you can find top Canuck prospects like Jordan Schroeder, Bill Sweatt, Anton Rodin, Yann Sauve and Kevin Connaution playing for the Chicago Wolves of the AHL.
This time around, don't be surprised to see some more familiar faces.
The Oklahoma City Barons have recently welcomed Jordan Eberle, Taylor Hall, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Justin Schultz from their affiliate Edmonton Oilers. But will the Canucks do the same?
As the lockout goes on, don't be surprised to see younger Canucks like Chris Tanev and Zack Kassian join the Wolves.
You can also find 2012 second-round pick Alexandre Mallet with the Chicago Wolves.
Other North American Leagues
For those true Vancouver fanatics who'd even like to follow the recent draft picks this season, you can look to the OHL and the NCAA.
As mentioned, second-round pick Alexandre Mallet has joined the Chicago Wolves of the AHL.
First-round pick (26th overall) Brendan Gaunce has returned to captain the Belleville Bulls of the OHL, and currently has six points through seven games.
Ben Hutton (fifth round), Wesley Myron (sixth round) and Matthew Beattie (seventh round) can all be found in the NCAA. Hutton is currently with the University of Maine, where he has played one game. Myron, although currently sidelined with a shoulder injury, will be a member of Boston University this year, and Beattie will be playing for Yale University.
With the exception of Dale Weise, most of the regular Canucks will be laying low for the time being.
They can be spotted crashing junior practices, attending NHLPA meetings, doing charity work or simply cruising the streets of Vancouver—just not in a Canucks jersey.
But as the days pass and a full season lost becomes more likely, many will look to Europe for other options.