Canucks weighing draft options, may trade their 25th selection

For the first time in franchise history, the Vancouver Canucks don’t own second and third-round entry draft picks and that could change their strategy with the 25th overall selection Friday in Los Angeles.

“There’s a possibility that if the player isn’t there that we’d like, we’d have a possibility of moving back and gaining two picks,” said general manager Mike Gillis. “We have a good group of forwards and prospect defencemen and we have good flexibility to select a player we’re comfortable with.”

A year ago, the Canucks cited a need for defencemen but couldn’t pass on college centre Jordan Schroeder , who slipped from a consensus top-10 pick to 22nd overall. They then addressed the back end by taking Kevin Connauton, Jeremy Price and Peter Andersson in the third, fourth and fifth rounds respectively. The Canucks are lacking a big, mobile prospect blueliner who plays tough down low and thought they had one in Taylor Ellington, the 33rd pick in the 2007 draft. But his lateral movement is questionable as he split last season between Manitoba (AHL) and Victoria (ECHL).