Word is that the Canucks have inked gritty winger Raffi Torres to a one year one million dollar deal. At CC, like most, we have commented on the need for just this type of player. Torres is tough, can score and has some decent playoff experience. In theory, he could slot in on any of the Canucks’ top 3 lines. Though at this price and this term, there must be baggage. Despite scoring 19 goals last season in just 74 games between stops in Columbus and Buffalo, he was scratched twice by coach Lindy Ruff during last year’s playoffs - a perplexing move given Torres’ renowned grit and character.
At any rate, he seems to be just the kind of player that coach Alain Vigneault loves, and, at worst, will seemingly replace the lost 3rd line grit of lead footed Steve Bernier. This move has the potential to work out in similar fashion to the Anson Carter pick up a few years back - a player, seemingly down on his luck, but with a decent track record, at a bargain price. Indeed, with Alex Burrows on the shelf until at least November, Torres could remarkably find himself alongside the twins and perhaps that was motivation enough for him to accept a one year deal for what amounts to chump change. Unlike the $2.5 million per season commitment to Manny Maholtra for 3 years, there seems to be little down side with this move.
The Canucks, who were already over the salary cap limit for the coming season, are likely not done dealing. However, with both Burrows and Sami Salo sidelined, we may not see any more significant player moves until they return from injury.
With that, we’re long overdue for another poll question. Mike Gillis has been a busy boy this off-season. He’s upgraded his defense without sacrificing his offense and has been able to add some size and grit to his collection of forwards. Has he done enough? We ask you, dear reader.
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