The Vancouver Canucks GM Mike Gillis announced today that the Canucks have acquired defenceman Shane O’Brien and right wing Michel Ouellet in exchange for defenceman Lukas Krajicek and right wing Juraj Simek from the Tampa Bay Lightning. O’Brien will report to Vancouver and Ouellet will report to Manitoba.
O’Brien, 25, spent the 2007-08 season with the Tampa Bay Lightning, recording 21 points (4-17-21) in 77 games played. The Port Hope, Ontario-native has played in 158 NHL games, scoring six goals and 31 assists for a total of 37 points and recording 330 penalty minutes. The 6’2”, 235-pound defenceman was selected in the eighth round, 250th overall in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft by the Anaheim Ducks.
Ouellet, 26, has played in 187 career NHL games with Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh, registering 116 points (52-64-116). The 6’0”, 201-pound right wing was named to the AHL All-Rookie Team in 2004. Born in Rimouski, Quebec, Ouellet was selected by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the fourth round, 124th overall in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft.
“Shane O’Brien is a young player who is big and tough and can move the puck,” said Gillis. "And Michel Ouellet was the only plus player in Tampa last year, he scored 17 goals, so we think he has some good upside."HODGSON RETURNS TO BRAMPTON
GM Mike Gillis also announced today that Cody Hodgson will return to Brampton for the 2008-09 season. Hodgson, 18, signed his first pro contract with the club on Sunday, October 5, 2008 after playing in three NHL preseason games, recording an assist and six penalty minutes.
“Cody has done what we expected him to do,” said Gillis. “He came in here really well prepared. He’s a really good, young player, he’s got a great attitude about things. He’s done everything we thought he would do. He hasn’t surprised us because we knew he’d be this way when he came in. We’re just really pleased with him and how he’s approached this training camp and for an 18-year old young man he’s got great poise and character.”
Last season, Hodgson had 40 goals and 45 assists with the Battalion. His 40 goals led the team and his 85 points were good to rank him in the top 20 in OHL scoring last year.
On the international level, Hodgson captained Canada’s Gold Medal winning U-18 entry in the World Junior Championships, and led the tournament in scoring with 12 points in 7 games.
The 6'0", 185 pound forward from Haliburton, Ontario was drafted tenth overall by the Vancouver Canucks in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.LOOKING FORWARD
Despite losing their final preseason game to Anaheim 4-3 in overtime the Canucks are happy with their preseason performance and looking forward to the regular season opener this Thursday.
Anaheim defenceman Nathan McIver scored on a breakaway 22 seconds into overtime to end the Canucks perfect preseason record. McIver was cut from the Canucks training camp roster on Saturday, placed on waivers and was picked up by the Ducks.
Although he ended the Canucks preseaon winning streak the Vancouver players had nothing but positive things to say about McIver, who was drafted by the Canucks in 2003 and played 18 games with the NHL club.
“I mean it is preseason and you never want to lose,” said Mattias Ohlund after last night’s game. “But it’s great to see a guy like him, a hard working guy [score]. Obviously played for us for a few years and played up here quite a bit and he is a great guy and hopefully he’ll find a way to find a job in Anaheim.”OTHER NEWS:
Canucks captain Roberto Luongo
sported a mask worthy of his new role in last night’s game. To view photos click here