The Vancouver Canucks have added another piece of the puzzle with the signing of defenceman Luke Schenn as free agency nears. The team made one big trade last week, but this is another move geared towards adding toughness and depth for the upcoming seasons. The deal is for two years with an unspecified cap hit. Andy Strickland announced the move late Monday night.
Hearing Luke Schenn connected to the Vancouver #Canucks on a two-year deal.
— Andy Strickland (@andystrickland) July 27, 2021
Canucks Sign Luke Schenn
Schenn was purely a depth piece for the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2020-21. The veteran defender contributed just two goals and four points in 38 games while averaging a career-low 10:45 of ice time per game. He did receive credit for 99 hits and 17 blocks on top of a 53.0 percent Corsi For and .9 relative Corsi, but it was a forgettable campaign overall.
The Toronto Maple Leafs originally drafted Schenn fifth overall in the 2008 Draft. He appeared for the Canadian franchise for four seasons before heading to the Philadelphia Flyers in 2012 in exchange for James van Riemsdyk. Philly eventually traded Schenn to the Los Angeles Kings, but he was with the team only briefly. He signed with the Arizona Coyotes later that year and has suited up for seven total franchises in 13 seasons. Schenn has amassed almost 800 NHL games during the regular season with 33 goals, 152 points, and over 2500 hits.
What This Means For the Future
Vancouver certainly needed some new bodies on its blueline, but it is unclear how much value Schenn can provide. He is a physical-first defender that will eat up cap space better spent on other players. They had just over $21 million in cap space before this deal, but there are still huge pieces to re-sign. That includes core players like Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes. It may have been smarter to rely on internal options to fulfill Schenn’s projected role as a checking defender. However, the Canucks have many more moves they could still execute before the season.
EDMONTON, ALBERTA – SEPTEMBER 28: Luke Schenn #2 of the Tampa Bay Lightning skates with the Stanley Cup following the series-winning victory over the Dallas Stars in Game Six of the 2020 NHL Stanley Cup Final at Rogers Place on September 28, 2020 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)