Latest Canucks and Jets Rumors – March 20, 2014

Does Zack Kassian need to get out of Vancouver to improve his NHL career? What area of the Jets roster needs improvement? 

Does Zack Kassian have a future with the Canucks?

Does Zack Kassian have a future with the Canucks?

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Tony Gallagher notes how call-up winger Nicklas Jensen got promoted to the Canucks top line over Zack Kassian. Gallagher believes Kassian doesn’t have a future with the Canucks as long as John Tortorella is coach, suggesting the big winger request a trade. If management refuses to trade Kassian (who’s a restricted free agent this summer), Gallagher suggests he “should simply ignore all Vancouver contract offers, go to arbitration and set about taking his leave as quickly as possible.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The 23-year-old Kassian was projected as a power forward with upside when the Canucks acquired him two years ago from Buffalo in the Cody Hodgson trade. Though he still has time to develop and mature, it certainly doesn’t seem like he’ll get that opportunity in Vancouver. If there isn’t a management and coaching change this summer, it’ll be interesting to see how his contract talks play out. 

WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: Gary Lawless believes Jets management must bolster their fourth-line depth this summer. “Targeting a bottom-six centre or some wingers to play with Jim Slater on the fourth line could go a long way to establishing some depth at the NHL level”, writes Lawless.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Considering the Jets recent record regarding free agent acquisitions, Lawless could get his wish. 


  1. Does the 23 year old Kassian need a third NHL club? He needs to play smart and well enough so he gets to play…going elsewhere just continues the spiral of new beginnings that sort of let’s him off the hook a bit.

    You have to ask yourself prior to Buffalo getting the opportunity to acquire Cody Hodgson for him, did the Sabres see that he wasn’t going to fit long term or was it the value of acquiring a centre that sealed the deal?

    • Kassian is kind of a goof. He’s been arrested down here in Windsor before for public intox and threatened to fight officers down here (but no charge laid for threats) and some ppl I know associated to the Spits say he’s a complete ass. His career will either be short or he will be lucky to amount to a Chris Neil type player.

      • And to think that Brian Burke turned down a draft-day trade offer that would have sent the Leafs first-round pick (Burke selected Kadri) plus Kaberle in exchange for Phil Kessel and the Broons first rounder. Burke obviously overvalued Kaberle.

        Boston was going to take Kassian with the 9th choice. Instead he went to Buffalo with the 13th choice, IIRC.

        Two months later, Burke sent Boston 2 firsts and a second for Kessel.

        • Just curious where are you getting this from? Just what you think was going on behind the scenes, or do you have a link to some of these statements?

        • Who cares?

          • Your right Shticky!!

  2. If he can’t score 12-15 goals a year on a year to year basis then he will end up being the 4th line 8 minutes a game player ( they call them energy line players) who plays on a different team every other year and if lucky gets $ 800K to 1 million a year. Still better than selling washers at Sears. Lots of guys like him who don’t score much. To Leaf fans, Is Tyler Biggs developing as a scorer or is he the next Kassian ?

  3. I dont think Kassian is doing so bad. When Jensen was put directly on the first line, it was because hes a sniper, something Kassian is not. You cant stick Jensen on the third or fourth lines and expect him to play
    at the same level as he is now. Power forwards typically take longer to develop (Bertuzzi?) didnt start out
    as the power forward he became until he was 25/26 years old. Kassian is 23. Let the kid play, learn and
    grow..(sound like an ABC mouse commercial) he’ll be fine.

  4. First off, Tony Gallagher is an idiot. His cup is always half empty and he majors in writing negative articles about his home team. Kassian has 11 goals and 8 assists (at $850k) which is exactly what Hansen has and Hansen got a raise to $2.5 million. Hansen plays an average of 3 1/2 minutes more per game and plays with better wingers. Kassian is developing just fine. Rookies like Jensen play on adrenalin and it’s common to see a kid light it up for a handful of games then disappear. What Kassian has to do is stop taking dumb penalties and work every shift of every game.

  5. In Buffalo, Kassian came into the league with so much promise. The problem with Kassian is consistency and taking dumb penalties. There are times when he just was complacent and didn’t keep up with the play. Trading Kassian for Hodgeson was a no brainer and Bflo made out. We needed a center and Cody has worked out well. Even though Kassian has 11 goals and 8 assists – they have come while playing with the top lines. To me the numbers seem too low, especially playing on the top 2 lines. I don’t believe Kassian is a top 6 forward, but he would be a good 3rd or 4th liner. A good place for him might be with the Jets – playing on the Slater line.

  6. It shouldn’t be difficult for the Jets or anyone to fill bottom 6 forward spots haha. In my experience 4th liners in the AHL are 4th liners in the NHL. Its hard to believe that is their priority.

    • Exactly. Maybe they should try for, I don’t know, a starting goalie???? or an elite forward…

  7. Edler Kessler Bieksa Kassian….. whos going to be left to play for the Canucks next year besides the Sedins?
    Good job Gillis …good job.

    • Eddie Lack’s playing well – he should be looking over his shoulder too. Very sad.

  8. Gallagher known locally as the Undertaker can’t find kind words to decribe his own mother, a real negative Nelly. But as to Kassian, it’s difficult to find in a player every thing he brings to the game. He intimidates has some nice skill and can score. Certainly not another Cam Neeley but he is part of the younger, fast and bigger future team model. Vcr is going big…that’s the tend when you look at thier future prospects and their drafting and Kassian will be part of that foundation.

    Matthius 6’4″, Lain 6’6″. Jensen 6’3″, Gaunce 6’3″, Grenier 6’4″, Labate 6’4″, Kassian 6’3″, Archibald 6’3″

    Kassian ain’t going any where

  9. Gallagher needs the negative spiel to compensate for his outsider status. the only info he gets is from agents trying to leverage their bargaining position. There are no insiders within the hockey community willing to give him the time of day.

  10. i liked the Hodgson for Kassian trade when it happened and i still like it. Hodgson was a 3rd line center in Vancouver (well away from the premier checking lines) who was protected in that the Canucks didn’t allow him to take defensive zone faceoffs unless they had to, with Art Ross winner Sedin and Selke winning Kesler ahead of him he wasn’t going any higher for the forseeable future and apparently not happy about it. Hodgson was put on the top line on Buffalo with premier wingers and has topped out at 41 points where Kassian has progressed at a different rate (lately they’ve got him with Booth and Schroeder … neither of whom looks to be in Vancouver’s future) he’s showing improvement and his teammates know he has their back. the Canucks have some depth at center and a good power forward is pretty hard to come by.