Best NHL trade deadline destinations for Canucks stars

The 2023 NHL trade deadline is rapidly approaching, and teams that are beginning to fade towards a rebuild could wind up being crucial sellers. Among the top names linked to a potential trade at the deadline is Vancouver Canucks forward Brock Boeser. Amid the disarray within the organization and their less-than-ideal position in the standings, Vancouver could part ways with some key pieces in order to expedite their rebuild.

With Bruce Boudreau out and Rick Tocchet in for the Canucks, it could be the perfect time to cut ties with guys like Bo Horvat and Boeser. Horvat has more frequently been floated as a trade candidate for the Canucks, due to his contract situation, but the possibility certainly remains for Brock Boeser to leave Vancouver ahead of the March deadline.

Boeser could get a decent return in a trade for the Canucks. The 25-year-old is still in the first year of a relatively team-friendly contract. The three-year $19.95 million deal was signed ahead of this season and pays him $6.65 million through the 2024-25 campaign. He’ll hit unrestricted free agency in 2025, so any team acquiring him will have two-plus years of control over his contract.

With all that in mind, let’s dive into some of the best NHL trade deadline destinations for Vancouver Canucks forward Brock Boeser.

4. Minnesota Wild

The Minnesota Wild are seeking some additional help on the wings in the attacking zone and could look to Boeser, who grew up in the area, as a fit for that need. The Wild have been seeking a trade partner for defenseman Matt Dumba, and if they could convince the Canucks to take him on as part of the Boeser trade, they’d open up the finances to bring on the 25-year-old.

While Boeser doesn’t provide much on the defensive end, he’s a sharpshooter with an eye for goals, having scored 23+ goals in four of his first five seasons. This year, he’s not off to his usual pace, but a trade to his hometown team could be the change of scenery he needs to get back on track. The Wild themselves are looking for another top-six winger, so it could be an ideal fit.

3. New York Islanders

The Islanders are in need of a boost on offense, and Boeser could provide exactly that from along the wing. The Islanders have tried and failed to nab some of the biggest names in free agency or the trade market in efforts to buff their offense in recent years, including Boeser’s teammate JT Miller and Blue Jackets forward Johnny Gaudreau.

Still in need of another piece to add alongside Andres Lee, Mathew Barzal, and Brock Nelson in the attacking zone, Boeser could provide the offensive threat they’re looking for, and could potentially benefit from playing alongside a top-tier playmaker like Barzal, who will feed him plenty of good looks on goal. The Islanders have just a 16.43 percent success rate on the power play this season, indicating a major need for some help in that regard.

2. Pittsburgh Penguins

The Pittsburgh Penguins could be another quality landing spot for Brock Boeser at the deadline. He’s a strong fit in the simple sense that the Penguins need some more depth on the wings, and also need a goalscorer. Clearly, Boeser fits that bill, and they’d be able to keep some control over his contract as he’s not a free agent until 2025.

With Bryan Rust having a somewhat disappointing season, Boeser could help make up some of the production, while also earning a key role on the Penguins power play, most likely among the second unit. He was phenomenal for the Canucks on the power play last season, where he scored 11 of his 23 goals.

1. Washington Capitals

The Capitals are an interesting team to watch at the deadline. With several aging veterans, it wouldn’t be shocking to see them opt for a rebuild, or a retool, if they’re out of position for the playoffs come March. If they’re still in the race, Boeser could be an intriguing option. While the Capitals may prefer a rental option off the trade market, Boeser has a manageable contract and is still just 25 years old.

With injuries having plagued several key players for Washington, adding Boeser both to provide depth as well as buff up the power play unit could be a smart move. 45 of Brock Boeser’s 130 career goals are on the power play. This season, the Capitals have converted on just 20.26 percent of their power play, which ranks in the bottom third of the league. A fix for both the short and long-term could be a trade for Boeser, who could play an important role on the right flank.

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