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THE ROUNDUP: Waive Goodbye, Vrbata Hangs Them Up, Tom Wilson Is Garbage Vol 378

Did the Canucks really waive Sam Gagner? You’re damn right they did.

NHL: Vancouver Canucks at Vegas Golden Knights Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

CANUCKS NEWS: Just when it seemed like we knew what we were going to get from the Vancouver Canucks this season, they come in with a greasy curveball that no one expected.

Darren Archibald getting sent down to Utica was not a surprise, but cutting Sam Gagner (especially after Jim Benning came out and admitted he had been trying to deal him) definitely was. This means, for the start of the season at least that Tyler Motte has earned a roster spot. As someone on board with the progression of the Canucks youth movement I am cool with this. Gagner wasn’t the worst free agent signing that this management group has made, but history isn’t gonna be kind to it either. Comets fans should be thrilled at the thought of a player of Gagner’s caliber bolstering their lineup and taking on a leadership role there as a fairly talented team prepares to do battle in a very competitive AHL North Division. The Comets will open their season Friday night against the defending champion Toronto Marlies, and you can watch that game as is free on the opening weekend... A couple other Canucks tidbits: Antoine Roussel continues to skate but there’s no clear sign he’ll be returning to the lineup after suffering an off-season concussion. Thatcher Demko will also miss the start of the season as he is currently under concussion protocol. Demko suffered the injury during practice in Utah before the game against LA last week. Demko will return to the Comets once he’s cleared to play, but it will be interesting to see if and when the Canucks bring him up this season... He wasn’t a Canuck for long but he certainly endeared himself to many fans, so let’s give a stick tap to Radim Vrbata, who announced his retirement from the NHL yesterday after 16 seasons...

AROUND THE LEAGUE: Can we all just stop defending Tom Wilson already? Caps fans, I know it’s instinct to defend your own, but bloody hell. Tom Wilson is a predatory hitter the likes of which this league hasn’t seen since Raffi Torres (and we all remember how his career ended). It’s time for the NHL to put an end to his nonsense and punish him severely, I mean just look at the damage he did to Oskar Sundqvist’s face...

If it isn’t a double digit suspension for repeat offender Wilson, I don’t even know what to say anymore... Speaking of retirements, the inspiration for the Philadelphia Flyers new mascot has retired. Scott Hartnell scored over 300 goals in 17 seasons. I believe that there’s only one player drafted in the 1990’s that’s still active (Craig Anderson of the Ottawa Senators)...

Things get underway tomorrow night as the Canucks take on the Calgary Flames at home to start what should be an interesting 2018-19 campaign. We’ll have full pre and post game coverage and of course our game threads. We look forward to being here for you again this season, helping you cope with this team that punishes our loyalty.