There was and still is so much talk about how the Canucks need a quick, puck-moving defencemen. A lot of this talk was fan-media generated. I'm beginning to think that Vancouver already has 2 (sometimes 3) of this type of D-man on their roster already. With Mattias Ohlund leaving, the reins could now be handed to Kevin Bieksa and Alexander Edler. I'd say Sami Salo, but he's not around enough. Bieksa and Edler had career years last season. They are getting better and better.
It's beginning to look like Mike Gillis is not looking very hard for a superstar defenceman anyways. That or he's losing out on the battle. Personally, I think we need the help up front and should spend the bulk of the money there. Regardless, here is a list of the prime defencemen that will most likely become unrestricted free agents in a few days. They are placed in order of previous dollar values. I've put my preferences in italics plus thrown in my "yay's" or "nay's" on each one.
What are your thoughts?
Scott Niedermayer - 35 - $6,750,000: Staying with the Ducks.
Mathieu Schneider - 40 - $5,750,000: Old and expensive.
Sergei Zubov - 38 - $5,350,000: Running into age and health issues. Still has the skill.
Rob Blake - 39 - $5,000,000: Doesn't want to leave California.
Jay Bouwmeester - 25 - $4,875,000: Signing with Calgary?
Adrian Aucoin - 35 - $4,000,000: Just say no.
Derek Morris - 30 - $3,950,000: God no. Too pricey with little offensive upside.
Christian Backman - 29 - $3,400,000: Has not put up the numbers.
Jaroslav Spacek- 35 - $3,300,000: 45 points last year.
Filip Kuba - 32 - $3,000,000: No no no
Nick Boynton - 30 - $2,950,000: Injury prone.
Niclas Havelid - 36 - $2,900,000: err....
Greg de Vries - 36 - $2,750,000: At a million less I would.
Philippe Boucher - 36 - $2,500,000: Major health problems.
Kyle McLaren - $2,500,000: Too pricey.
Darryl Sydor - 37 - $2,500,000: Great experience and smart player.
Rhett Warrener - 33 - $2,500,000: Health issues and no offence.
Karlis Skrastins - 34 - $2,400,000: M'eh.
Denis Gauthier - 32 - $2,200,000: Mean but too goony.
Hal Gill - 34 - $2,100,000: Hmm.. Hated him in Toronto. Liked him in Pitts.
Dmitri Kalinin - 28 - $2,100,000: Go back to Russia.
Paul Mara - 29 - $1,950,000: Ohlund-type. Less points.
Michael Komisarek - 27 - $1,900,000: Another Ohlund-type, less points also. I'd sign him at $2-2.5 million.
Martin Skoula - 29 - $1,900,000: Lumbering..oft-moved. There's a reason for that.
Francis Bouillon - 33 - $1,875,000: Maybe.
Mathieu Dandenault - 33 - $1,750,000: Unsure.
Marc-Andre Bergeron - 28 - $1,691,000: Fast, creative and TOO SMALL.
Francois Beauchemin - 29 - $1,650,000: Oh hell yes.
Anders Eriksson - $1,500,000: No!
Jordan Leopold - 28 - $1,500,000: Will be signed by Florida.
Andrew Alberts - 28 - $1,400,000: Unsure.
Marek Malik - 34 - $1,250,000: Haha! A second tour of duty here? Not a chance.
Sean O'Donnell - 37 - $1,250,000: Always liked this guy.
The rest of the list can be found here.