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Breaking: Canucks call up top prospect from AHL

Cap move or hockey move? This one is strange…

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The Vancouver Canucks have announced that they’ve called up top prospect Thatcher Demko and veteran defenseman Patrick Wiercioch from the AHL’s Utica Comets.

The recall of Demko, one of the top goaltending prospects in the world, is particularly intriguing since both of the team’s goaltenders, Jacob Markstrom and Anders Nilsson, are healthy and in the lineup. Some analysts have suggested that the call-up is a “paper move” only meaning that Demko won’t actually see any playing time with the team and that his recall is solely for the purposes of providing the team with cap relief. 

With both Alex Edler and Loui Eriksson on the IR long-term, the team is effectively trying to push themselves as close to the salary cap as possible to give themselves as much “cap relief” as possible later in the season. It’s a complicated move, but it appears that the additions of Demko and Wiercioch will be temporary.

Regardless, Demko has been phenomenal at the AHL level this season with a 1.26 GAA and .960 Sv% in four games with the Comets.