The 2014 NHL Draft is only a few hours away and for the time being the Florida Panthers are on the clock, but general manager Dale Tallon has been open about the possibilities of trading the pick and the Vancouver Canucks may take him up on that offer.
According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, some on the draft floor are convinced the first pick overall is on the move and the Canucks may be the target. Dreger later tweeted it’s likely the Panthers will trade the pick, but no deal is yet complete.
The Canucks have been active in the hours leading up to the draft, which is always a day full of trades and even more trade rumors, with the big deal of the day being Ryan Kesler being shipped out of Vancouver to the Anaheim Ducks. That was the first of three trades the team pulled off before supper.
The team struggled mightily last season with both Daniel Sedin and Henrik Sedin battling injury and inconsistency amid a lost season so a shakeup was in store for the Canucks who had been regulars in the Western Conference Playoffs the past few seasons.
However, with no clear-cut option at the top of the draft this year, it would be a bold move to move up from the No. 6 pick where Vancouver picks and move up to take a player from the consensus top four group of Kingston Frontenacs center Samuel Bennett, Barrie Colts defenseman Aaron Ekblad, Kootenay Ice center Sam Reinhart and Prince Albert Raiders center Leon Draisaitl.
The trade of their No. 2 center in Kesler would put one of those three centers in the picture for Vancouver should they be the team to trade up to the top spot.