NHL Canadian Corner – January 19, 2013.

As the shortened NHL 2012-13 season finally begins, check out the latest on Alexander Edler, Daniel Alfredsson, Andrei Markov, James van Riemsdyk, Nikolai Khabibulin, Steve Begin and Mark Scheifele.

Canucks re-signed Edler to 6-year, $30 million extension.

Canucks re-signed Edler to 6-year, $30 million extension.

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: The Canucks last night re-signed defenseman Alexander Edler to a six-year, $30 million contract extension which begins in 2013-14, worth an average annual cap hit of $5 million. Edler was eligible for UFA status in July.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As one pundit observed when the deal was announced, Edler left money on the table to remain long-term with the Canucks. He undoubtedly would’ve received much more on the open market this summer. It’s a good move by the Canucks but also ties up a considerable chunk of change (nearly $23 million) in their blueline corps beyond this season.

This’ll put more pressure upon Canucks management to shop Roberto Luongo this summer (if he isn’t moved by the April 3 trade deadline), and we can anticipate Keith Ballard ($4.2 million) becoming a compliance buyout candidate in July.

OTTAWA SUN: Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson isn’t ruling out the possibility of returning next season.

SPECTOR’ S NOTE: That’ll depend, of course, on how he plays this season. If he does return, it’ll only be with the Senators.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens oft-injured defenseman Andrei Markov begins this shortened season healthy.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Habs fans will be hoping he remains healthy throughout the season, especially with rising blueline star P.K. Subban still out of the lineup due to contract negotiations.

TORONTO SUN: New Maple Leafs winger James van Riemsdyk claims he’s prepared for the spotlight of the season opener against Montreal.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I just hope he’s prepared for the fishbowl existence of a Maple Leaf.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Oilers goalie Nikolai Khabibulin is not yet ready for game action as he continues to rehab a hip flexor injury. The club recently called up Yann Danis to back up starter Devan Dubnyk.

CALGARY SUN: The Flames have signed veteran forward Steve Begin, who began his NHL career with the Flames back in 1997.

WINNIPEG SUN: Mark Scheifele is getting his second chance to crack the Jets roster.


  1. Getting Edler to sign and once again take a “home town” discount says volumes about GM Mike Gillis, the Canucks organization as a whole and how tight the players are with each other. He is not the first nor will he be the last to give the Canucks a break on salary compared to what he could have received on the open market. While he is now the highest paid D-man on the team he still could have put more in the bank if he had went on the open market.
    Whatever Vancouver is doing that gets players to sign for less than they could get elsewhere is a mystery to me and other Canuck fans but I don’t hear any other team’s being able to do this with as many, if any players.
    While the Canucks have a lot of money invested in defense it does allow them the satisfaction of knowing that they have stability on the back end and let’s them concentrate on improving the team up front.

  2. Edler certainly signed for a discount. He was tied with Webber last season and only 5 pointd I believe behind Chara. Not to say he is similar to either of those players but considering he did suffer with back problems and has to have surgery on his fingers he still put up quality numbers. With the addition of a couple of less expensive D during the summer, Tanev and Connauton and moving Ballard there will be a balance struck with the money spent on the defense. I expect what ever goes out money wise with Luongo will come back in the trade.