Nat Geo Presents: Beast against beast. (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)
GMMG spoke with Matt Sekeres via the radio and G&M today. He shared the following:
On Shea Weber:
Our issue was how do you get the player,...Our issue wasn’t the money. It’s how do you actually get the player on your team. Our feeling was that a contract with term probably wouldn’t allow that to happen....We threw around trade possibilities. We threw around every possible scenario. I spoke to him [Weber] about every possible scenario, and his agent. At the end of the day, I guess Philadelphia was prepared to take that chance.
...well not every scenario. Gillis wasn't taking the bait on why he didn't try to blow Nashville out of the water with a Holmgren-esque offer sheet. Gillis isn't gambling much with his baby: he'll do the legwork but won't gut the team, or toss his cap management out the window either. Maybe - juuuust maybe - he doesn't think the team needs Weber after a certain cost point. We can debate his perspective until we're blue in the face, but he clearly believe the Canucks don't need considerable changes.
On Shane Doan:
We’re one of the teams that are active in trying to pursue him and see if he’d like to play here in Vancouver...Not sure of a timeline yet but we’re hopeful we have a chance to convince him to play here.
And why is he extending his hand to a 35+?
There are specific situations that cause you, not to reconsider the guidelines, but present a different set of a facts, a different set of circumstances, that take you outside of those guidelines.
No real surprise here. Despite his summer summit claim of making the Canucks "younger, bigger and stronger" it certainly wouldn't be the first time (Sundin, Schneider) he tries to wrangle in older talent. It's a safe assumption Vancouver isn't a front runner for the Phoenix captain, but crazier things right? Give him credit for chasing down a unique asset when the opportunity presents itself.
On Roberto Luongo:
We’ve been given solid offers. Nothing we would do today. We’re going to continue the process with the teams that are interested.
Translation: Tallon still isn't budging on the player/prospect we want and Burke keeps hanging up on us. Still plenty of summer to go, but it's entirely possible Luongo and Schneider guard the same crease for a little while longer. Can you truly blame Gillis for not budging when he's offering one of the best goalies in the league in return?
Moving away from the sexy stuff MG also chimed in on the following:
- Raymond has a big year ahead of himself. Needs a big rebound effort and they believe he can deliver.
- Gillis was in on the Nash sweepstakes but stepped aside when he saw the asking price (also, for the record, Nash never listed Vancouver as a team he wanted to be moved to).
- He's immensely bullish on both Kevin Connauton and Frankie Corrado. K-Nauts progression specifically is one of the reasons they felt comfortable letting Gragnani hit bricks, so as far as the front office goes, the youngster is damn close. Corrado is still too young to consider an option and has one year left on his junior contract to boot.
- Garrison is a quality addition who doesn't necessarily have to play on the right side.
- Zack Kassian has lost some weight, as per the team's request, and is looking good for a solid camp shot. Here's some video of him training if you dig lunge jumps.
- Through some deep sighs, he said some nice things about Ballard being able to play tough minutes and likes the Tanev/Ballard tandem.
- He believes the Preds will match the Weber offer.
tl;dr - He's staying the course. His hands are tied a bit with Luongo but he's not going to one of his most attractive assets if the market isn't there. As a result he sounds content for now and definitely seems excited (more so than in previous offseasons) for an injection of youth when camp rolls around.
What say you? Should Gillis have been more aggressive this summer or are you content with his conservative approach?