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Wake With Elias: Rutherford drops GM hints & Brian Hamilton’s story goes viral

Nothing but good vibes so far in 2022.

2020 NHL Draft - Round 2-7
Director of Amateur Scouting Patrik Allvin of the Pittsburgh Penguins stands at the podium before their pick in rounds 2-7 of the 2020 NHL Entry Draft at PPG Paints Arena on October 07, 2020 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The 2020 NHL Draft was held virtually due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.
Photo by Ryan Yorgen/NHLI via Getty Images

Aside from the COVID-induced week-long layoff for the Canucks, 2022 has started out on a positive note.

And thank goodness for that, because 2021 truly did suck.

Let’s keep the good times rolling with an overly positive morning news round-up.

Canucks News

  • Jim Rutherford recently conducted an interview where he dropped hints about who the newest Canucks GM might be. [Postmedia]

The biggest takeaway was that he wants to hire someone that he would consider an “entry-level GM.”

“They (candidates) are people who have worked very hard to put themselves in a position to be ready to be an NHL general manager,” Rutherford told Postmedia. “They would be entry-level. What I would consider an entry-level general manager.”

With that statement, we can basically eliminate any former NHL GMs who might have been on the Canucks’ radar.

The article mentions that Patrik Allvin, an assistant GM with the Pittsburgh Penguins, is still the front-runner for the job.

  • Brock Boeser reportedly returned to Vancouver on Monday after being forced to quarantine in Anaheim due to a positive COVID-19 test. Jason Dickinson, Phillip Di Guiseppe and Justin Dowling are also still in protocol. [The Province]
  • The Abbotsford Canucks are set to play four games in five nights after their schedule was altered due to the pandemic. [Abbotsford News]
  • Here’s a look at how the Abbotsford Canucks compare in popularity to other local sports franchises. [Abbotsford News]
  • Thatcher Demko was recently named the NHL’s third star of the month, after going 7-1-0 with one shutout and a .946 save percentage in December. [NHL]

Maple Leafs forward Auston Matthews (7 GP, 10-4-14) was named first star of the month. Golden Knights winger Max Pacioretty (12 GP, 10-6-16) was second.

  • Finally, the story of Canucks equipment manager Brian Hamilton thanking the Seattle Kraken fan who pointed out a cancerous mole on the back of his neck has officially gone viral.

Their story was picked up all around the globe, with interviews being conducted on CNN, BBC News and Sky News. The story even made it to newspapers in Australia.

Re-live the feel-good story here.

Around the NHL

  • I sincerely hope other GMs around the NHL find a way not to give the Oilers any goaltending help...

The Edmonton Oilers continue to sink down the standings after Mikko Koskinen’s brutal mistake put his team behind in a 4-1 loss to the New York Rangers.

Head coach Dave Tippett lambasted his goaltender after the game. [Sportsnet]

The Canucks are now within three points of Edmonton for the final Wild Card spot in the West. Edmonton has a game in hand.

  • With Seattle toiling near the bottom of the NHL standings, here’s a team-by-team look at players who they missed out on drafting. [TSN]
  • Gary Bettman is trying to get the IOC to move hockey to the Summer Olympics...something he’s been trying for decades. [Yahoo Sports]
  • Here are some surprises from 2021 and a look at what’s in store for 2022. [Sportsnet]
  • Finally, here’s a look at how much the Canucks are rising on the NHL Power Rankings. [NBC Sports]