Canucks Gone Wild: Pavol Demitra Signs in Vancouver

Ryan AndersonContributor IJuly 10, 2008

Mike Gillis and the Canucks organization signed former Minnesota Wild right winger Pavol Demitra today.  This signing was highly anticipated since the 2008 Draft in June by almost every reporter even remotely linked to Vancouver sports.  Demitra, even at 33 years old, is a speedy winger who will without a doubt provide the top six offence the Canucks have been looking for.

Pavol was acquired to take the place of former Canucks Brendan Morrison and Markus Naslund next year.  He recorded 54 points (15 goals, 39assists) and 24 penalty minutes in 68 games last season with the Wild.

During his 14 year NHL career with the Wild, Los Angeles Kings, St. Louis Blues and Ottawa Senators, Demitra has played 750 regular season games, scoring 281 goals while adding 418 assists for 699 points (281-418-699) and 264 penalty minutes.

Demitra signed a 2 year $8 million contract paying him $4 million per season.  Mike Gillis had this to say about his latest off season move, "Throughout his NHL career, Pavol has proven himself to be an offensive contributor where ever he has played. Pavol is a strong two-way hockey player with excellent quickness and finish. His play making abilities will be an asset on our power-play and make him a great addition to our top six forwards."

All in all a great acquisition especially so late in the free agent season.  Next stop for Mr. Gillis...  the trade market.