Don't look now, but the halfway point of this abbreviated NHL season is approaching fast. Heading into Tuesday's matchup against Phoenix, the Vancouver Canucks have now played 18 of their 48 games. The April 3 trade deadline is just over five weeks away.
That doesn't leave general manager Mike Gillis much time if he decides to adjust his roster. After Sunday's 8-3 shellacking by Detroit, he must be tempted.
The status quo is for Gillis to stand behind his group. The Canucks look like they should cruise to another Northwest Division title and will be poised to make a serious playoff run, so it's unlikely they'll be eager to trade any of their primary assets—a goaltender possibly excepted.
Another team's impending free agent might make an attractive addition for the stretch run and the playoffs as an old-fashioned "rent-a-player." With the imminent drop in the salary cap next year, I'm sure Vancouver wouldn't be averse to unloading a big salary or two—especially if they could get value in return.
Rather than trying to mock up specific deals, this article will look more broadly at who the Canucks might be willing to part with and what they'll be seeking.