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Canucks take another short-term gamble by acquiring defenceman Ethan Bear

The Canucks acquired the 25-year-old on Friday.

Anaheim Ducks v Carolina Hurricanes
Ethan Bear #25 of the Carolina Hurricanes prepares for a face-off during an NHL game against the Anaheim Ducks on April 10, 2022 at PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images

Did someone tell Patrik Allvin that we’re not at the trade deadline yet? Because he’s wheeling and dealing like we’re in early March.

On Friday, the Canucks acquired right-shot defenceman Ethan Bear and depth centre Lane Pederson from the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for a 2023 fifth-round pick.

Carolina will also retain $400,000 of Bear’s salary, meaning he’ll be on the Canucks books at a price tag of $1.8 million for the rest of the season.

Bear will be an RFA at the end of 2022-23.

Now, make no mistake, this is another short-term gamble by Allvin.

However, there’s less risk and more upside with this deal compared to the one he swung last night for Jack Studnicka.

Back in 2019-20, Bear was a rookie for the Edmonton Oilers who was playing in a top-four role alongside Darnell Nurse. He finished 10th in Calder voting at the end of that season.

He then saw his role with the Oilers decrease in 2020-21 before being traded to the Carolina Hurricanes for Warren Foegele during the 2021 offseason.

Bear started off strong with the Hurricanes last season with six points in 16 games. He then contracted COVID in November of last season, and reportedly suffered some long-term effects after the fact.

He never really got a regular spot in the lineup back after that. Even this season, former Canuck Jalen Chatfield was playing ahead of Bear in the Canes’ lineup.

Now, that could be a red flag...or it could just be a byproduct of the Canes tight, defensive system.

Bear isn’t known as a defensive defenceman. The strengths of his game are skating and puck moving.

You can gripe (if you’re grumpy) about the Canucks giving up a fifth-round pick. That’s fair, considering the number of draft picks this team has traded away over the past number of years.

But, the Canucks pushed their cards to the middle during the offseason when they re-signed Boeser, re-signed Miller and signed Ilya Mikheyev to expensive contracts.

You can cry for a rebuild until your lungs are airless and your fingers are numb from doom-tweeting, but that’s clearly not the direction this team is going in.

So, it’s another short-term gamble for the Canucks...although in fairness, they’ve acquired a pretty interesting player who’s certainly going to get a chance to succeed in Vancouver.


Do you like the trade for Ethan Bear?

This poll is closed

  • 70%
    F yeah
    (193 votes)
  • 22%
    (61 votes)
  • 7%
    We traded ANOTHER draft pick??
    (21 votes)
275 votes total Vote Now