On the Vancouver Canucks …
Pierre LeBrun: Canucks GM Jim Benning said that he’s still interested in bringing free agents goaltender Ryan Miller back next season. [LeBrun] thinks that Benning is scheduled to meet with Miller’s agent Mike Liut at the draft combine this week.
Rick Dhaliwal: Have been informed that the Canucks are longer in the running for free agent OHL defenseman Darren Raddysh.
Aaron Portzline: The Columbus Blue Jackets need to send the Canucks a second round pick either this year or next for the signing of head coach John Tortorella. A decision is due on Thursday and it’s not known yet if they will give it up or not.
Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Canucks: GM Jim Benning is hopeful they will have an extra 2nd round pick this year from the Blue Jackets. It would make sense from the Blue Jackets side of things instead of next year. The Blue Jackets would give the Canucks the No. 55 pick this year, and it they waited till next year, it might be a higher pick.
The expansion draft is one aspect that might have the Blue Jackets thinking of holding on to the pick and using in a potential deal with the Vegas Golden Knights. The Blue Jackets could also work out a deal with the Golden Knights that doesn’t involve the second round pick.
“We went through every team in the league for the expansion draft to try and figure out what teams are going to do — and what (unprotected) players are going to be available — so we can see if there’s a fit before or after the expansion draft,” said Benning.
“There are going to be a lot of conversations between now and when the expansion draft happens. I’m getting more calls now from GMs who are getting a feel for what other teams are doing.”