Report: Canucks planning big trade, Schmidt on the move

Straight from NHL insider Nick Kypreos.

HockeyFeed

According to a report from NHL insider Nick Kypreos, the Vancouver Canucks are back in the hunt for Arizona Coyotes captain Oliver Ekman-Larsson and are reportedly looking to trade blueliner Nate Schmidt in order to make room for Ekman-Larsson.

On his latest "Real Kyper" show with Doug MacLean, Kypreos reported that Canucks GM Jim Benning is actively trying to trade Schmidt, despite Benning himself saying earlier this year that he wasn't.

From Kypreos:

"Vancouver is trying to move Nate Schmidt out to move in Oliver Ekman-Larsson from Arizona"

 You may recall that Benning and the Canucks made a strong push to acquire Ekman-Larsson last offseason but ultimately fell short in trade talks. As a result Benning neglected to negotiate in earnest with pending free agents Tyler Toffoli, Jacob Markstrom and Chris Tanev. All three free agents left the team for better options and and were vocal about the fact that they never received legitimate offers from Benning and the Canucks. With big negotiations for pending restricted free agents Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes this offseason, you can't blame Canucks fans for feeling nervous about a potential Ekman-Larsson trade. After all, this Canucks management team has a LOT of work to do this offseason and they cannot allow themselves to get tied up in trade talks for 30 year old defenseman who makes $8+ million against the salary cap for the next six seasons. This is a team with nearly half a dozen bad contracts and Ekman-Larsson would arguably be the team's worst contract if Benning were to acquire him via trade. Nervous times for Canucks fans.

At the same time, Schmidt hasn't exactly been a stellar addition either. Acquired last offseason from the Vegas Golden Knights for just a 3rd round draft pick, Schmidt put up just five goals and 15 points in 54 games for the Canucks in 2020-21. This is following a 30+ point season in just 59 games for Vegas. Ouch. Oh... and he carries a nearly $6 million cap hit for the next four seasons. Double ouch. Remember those bad contracts I mentioned?

Watch below for Kypreos' and MacLean's full take on the entire OEL to Vancouver rumours: