Does Kesler Want Out Of Vancouver Or Not?

Jeff Gross

First of all:

OK, so the news on his hand is probably not very good. But that has taken a back seat to the hoopla on the internet today that started with a report from this guy:

Louis Jean and the peeps at TVA Sports in Quebec, for the record, are not completely full of shit. Is this a publicity stunt? I am going to say...not entirely. I have seen TVA guys be accurate before...and of course that generates publicity. That's their job.

But let me ask you this: Do you really think Ryan Kesler bleeds blue and green? Does he look like he is having any fun out there this season? No, he does not.

Then this from Brad Ziemer of the Vancouver Sun:

A clearly agitated Mike Gillis refused to directly address a report that centre Ryan Kesler has asked the Vancouver Canucks to trade him.

The Canuck general manager would not confirm or deny a report on Twitter from Louis Jean of TVA Sports in Montreal that Kesler wants a trade and made the request at the start of the season.

"If we discussed every internal or personal issue we have as an organization, we wouldn't stay in business very long," Gillis said before Wednesday night’s game with the St. Louis Blues. "So I'm not going to comment on it."

"I am not going to talk about anything internal, whether he (Kesler) has asked or not asked to be traded, whether any other player has asked to be traded," Gillis said. "I have never done it and I wouldn’t discuss it outside our office with anybody other than our staff under any circumstances, no matter what it is. I’m not discussing it here."

The TSN guys jumped on it, of course. And I thought Bob McKenzie's analysis was good.

Even The Province's Jason Botchford, post Blues' game, said:

"Kiss Kesler Goodbye"

The Canucks have been absorbing offers already and are planning to trade their Selke-winning center.

Kesler's agent called the report "BS" but he's an agent. If you put stock in what a player agent says, you need your head examined.

Botchford is saying that according to his sources that the "trade request did not occur at the start of the season, as reported." Did it happen in Sochi then?

Either way, Kesler is going to miss some time with his hand injury. If he does not get traded by the deadline a week from now, he had better return to action for the Vancouver Canucks and give his all for the TEAM . That's all that matters. This team is in a dogfight to make the playoffs and he had better help the cause. This report that he wants out is so unfortunate in that it comes at such a serious time for the team. It's also a heart-breaking possible-reality that Kesler's days in a Canucks uni are numbered.

We'll deal with this issue more as the trade deadline approaches.

Kesler is making $5 million this season and the 2 seasons after. He has 20 goals and 38 points in 60 games with the Canucks this season. He is a -10. He has 7 power play goals and 7 power play assists. He has 5 game-winning goals.  He is averaging 22:13 ice time per game this season. F*ck the -10. He is not a player that is easily replaced.

As to why he would want out of Vancouver? I don't know. He had issues with Alain Vigneault. He probably has issues with John Tortorella. He said in Sochi: "A lot of people in Vancouver make a lot of everything."

Maybe he wants a quieter, less-stressful life. I have no idea.

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