The Vancouver Canucks roster continues to take shape this week. Coaches and management will make use of the time left until the Wednesday noon deadline to evaluate, analyze and adjust the Canucks final roster that will debut in the regular season opener this Thursday.
Canucks forwards Matt Pettinger and Jason Krog have been put on waivers. Pettinger was acquired from the Capitals in 2008 for Matt Cooke and played 20 games for the Canucks last season, recording 6 points. Krog was signed as a free agent by the Canucks in the off-season.
General Manager Mike Gillis had previously decided to cut forward Mike Brown, however before he was put on waivers the club learned that is was unlikely he would clear.
"We intended to put him on waivers, but when we found out there was a lot of interest in him we decided that we wouldn't do that," said Gillis. "We didn't want to lose a good young player like him for nothing. When it became clear he wouldn't clear waivers, we called him.
"We have the luxury now where we have depth and we like the depth players we have. We don't want to lose them in a waiver situation. If we're forced to make a trade to get something in return, we'd prefer that. It's a juggling act every team is going through right now. There's one or two players they don't want to put through waivers and lose. We're no different."
Defenceman Lawrence Nycholat has experienced back problems and underwent a MRI yesterday. He will likely end up on the injured reserve list to start the season. Having already lost defenceman Nathan McIver to Anaheim on waivers late last week the Canucks would risk losing Nycholat if they assign him to the minors.
"We don't want to have a defenceman get injured and have lost someone, so I imagine us carrying eight defencemen for the first month," Gillis said.NEW FACES
Newly acquired defenceman Shane O'Brien is expected to practice with the team at GM Place this afternoon and is excited to find his rhythm and learn from Vancouver's experienced blueline.
"I have no problem getting in there if people are taking liberties and just being a tough player to play against every night," said O'Brien.
"Throughout my career I've been known to get in there and mix it up a little bit. That part of my game will always be there, but what I'm really trying to focus on is being a solid player. I'm more worried about playing and improving every day."
O'Brien will wear No.55 when he takes to the ice in his new Vancouver uniform, a number previously worn by former Canuck Ed Jovanoski, a fan favourite and veteran d-man who played in Vancouver for seven seasons.
"Those are pretty big shoes to fill, so I guess I'll have to get it going right away," said O'Brien.
Forward Michel Ouellet will start the season off with the Moose, having already cleared waivers he will report directly to Manitoba. He played in 64 games last season with the Lightning and registered 36 points.
"They just told me to go to Winnipeg, get it started and do the best I can to prove I can be back in the NHL," said Ouellet. "Sometimes you need to take one step back to take two steps forward."
"Every player here has earned his keep and he has to show us he's good enough to play here," said Gillis. "We're going to watch him and see how he does. He'll determine what will happen to him. If he plays well enough to come here, then he'll come here."GETTING THE TEAM TOGETHER
The Vancouver Canucks took their annual team photo
prior to hitting the ice for practice Tuesday afternoon.Roberto Luongo
took his place in the centre of the photo donning the captain's C on his left shoulder for the first time since his appointment. Goalies are prohibited to wear the letter on their jersey during the game but Luongo displays the letter in the picture.
Assistant captains, Willie Mitchell, Mattias Ohlund, and Ryan Kesler
were positioned directly behind the newly appointed captain.