Gallagher: There’s hope for the Canucks, but it only comes via trade
Consider for a moment if this team could, for argument’s sake, get into the running for a player like Thomas Vanek. Re: a winger who could score and would have a chance of playing well with the twins in their years to come in this uniform.
That would give this team a sniper to play with the Sedins, something they’ve never had before, something to actually encourage them as they head into the twilight of their careers. Then you would have Ryan Kesler centring a second line with Zack Kassian and Alex Burrows or Chris Higgins, depending upon who was playing better. Bo Horvat would centre the third line with Higgins or Burrows and Hansen with Tom Sestito to start whatever you’re doing with your fourth line.
With a Vanek-like figure likely only available through the trade route, you would at least lose one of the major figures on the back end, and likely more. But if they were able to pull off something like that you could see at least some semblance of a competitive team remaining in this town.
Granted, GM Mike Gillis’ track record in the trade department hasn’t been great, and a major move like this would be difficult to bring about. But changes must come to this team, and the trade deadline just might turn out to be a better time than the draft to try to make such a move in a league where trades of any significance are few and far between.