Sports. Honestly. Since 2011

Why the Canucks Should Consider Trading Alex Burrows

Why the Vancouver Canucks should consider trading Alex Burrows.

When talking about Canucks that could be on their way out this off-season, you get the same cast of characters no matter who you talk with: Chris Higgins, Kevin Bieksa, Dan Hamhuis, Shawn Matthias, etc. However, a player that could very well be leaving VanCity is Alex Burrows, and as much as that may hurt for many fans, it may just be the right move for the organization.

Jim Benning has continuously expressed his desire to get younger as an organization and leaning more heavily on young NHL’ers such as Bo Horvat and Zack Kassian, as well as implementing up-and-coming prospects such as Sven Baertschi and Jake Virtanen into the lineup. No doubt that to do so, a top-six spot will need to be cleared up, whether it be for Kassian, Baertschi, or any number of skill-oriented prospects, and considering Burrows is the oldest forward not named Henrik or Daniel Sedin, and that there’s no room for him in the bottom-six, moving Burrows appears to be the most logical move. Another aspect that needs to be taken into consideration is his cap-hit, and whether it’s warranted considering what he brings to the table from an offensive standpoint.

There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that Burrows is a significant part of the Canucks’ penalty kill and leadership core, but for a team that has had their struggles and inconsistencies when it comes to putting the puck in the net, as well as currently being low on salary cap room, having a guy who scored at less than a point-every-other-game pace last season put $4.5 million against the cap makes little to no sense going forward. Yes, Burrows’ previous contract was among the best in hockey, and he most certainly deserved a raise, but as it stands, the 34-year-old forward is, predictably, not playing $4.5 million hockey (which cannot be completely placed on Burrows, as it’s rare that 34-year-old players do play the game at that level.) If the Canucks want to make any sort of splash in free agency, which they just might, getting Burrows’ $4.5M off the books needs to be made a priority.

However, what throws a wrench into this entire ordeal, is his no-trade clause. Considering all that Burrows has been through with this organization, and that he’s been with the Canucks his entire career, he will likely be hesitant to waive. Is it doable? Sure, look what Benning was able to do with Jason Garrison, a B.C. native and active community member, but Burrows is in the same boat as defenceman Kevin Bieksa in that he’s a lifetime Canuck as well as a fan-favourite, making him a potentially difficult asset to move.

What the Canucks could acquire in return for Burrows is questionable, as not many teams will be willing to pay a hefty price for an aging winger who has seen a steady production decline, even with the inevitable salary retention, but they will be able to get something, and for Vancouver, it’s about more than just what they get in return. Would trading the beloved Quebec native be a tough pill to swallow for Canucks fans? Sure it would, as hated as he may be around the National Hockey League, he’s been a favourite among supporters for nearly his entire career. But it is without question something the organization needs to consider if they truly do hope to get younger in the coming years.

Main Photo


More Posts

Send Us A Message