VANCOUVER - The Vancouver Canucks placed forward Linden Vey and defencemen Frank Corrado and Alex Biega on waivers Monday, paving the way for a trio of rookies to start the season with the club.
The moves mean that 19-year-old forwards Jake Virtanen and Jared McCann, and 22-year-old defenceman Ben Hutton will be with the Canucks when they open their schedule on Wednesday in Calgary against the Flames.
With veteran winger Chris Higgins out with a broken foot, 30-year-old Adam Cracknell also made the team.
The sixth overall selection at the 2014 draft, Virtanen had two goals and two assists in six pre-season games, while McCann, who was taken 18 picks later, also had four points (2G, 2A) in his six exhibition contests.
The Canucks could lose Vey, Corrado and Biega on the waiver wire ahead of assigning to the AHL, with the first two the biggest risk.
The 24-year-old Vey had 10 goals and 14 assists in his first full NHL season with the Canucks in 2014-15 after being acquired from the Los Angeles Kings for a second-round pick.
Corrado, meanwhile, has been viewed as one of Vancouver's top young defence prospects, but the 22-year-old was passed by Hutton in the pecking order.
The Canucks still have a bit of wiggle room with Virtanen and McCann if things don't work out early in the season. Both players are too young to play in the AHL and their only option is being returned to junior, but they won't have the first year of their entry-level contract burned until each plays their 10th NHL game.