Will Canucks captain Bo Horvat end up with the Seattle Kraken?

Jan 8 2023, 10:15 pm

The Bo Horvat saga with the Vancouver Canucks has a new wrinkle.

For nearly a month now, the writing has appeared on the wall that it’s not a matter of if  the Canucks trade their captain Horvat, but rather when.

And Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman is pondering if the Canucks could do the truly unthinkable — and send them to the rival Seattle Kraken.

“Obviously there’s going to be a ton of interest… one team, guys, I’ve wondered about potentially getting into this is the Seattle Kraken,” Friedman said on Saturday’s 32 Thoughts segment of the Hockey Night in Canada broadcast.

With a record of 22-12-4 and 48 points, Seattle is third in the Pacific Division, and in pursuit of their first playoff berth in franchise history in their second year of existence. Vancouver, meanwhile, is sixth in the Pacific Division, with a 17-18-3 record and 38 points.

Horvat, Vancouver’s captain for each of the last four seasons, is in the final year of a six-year deal worth $5.5 million per season, with his first shot at unrestricted free agency looming this July.

He’s in the midst of a career year, with 28 goals and 15 assists in just 38 games so far this season. Horvat’s career highs are 31 goals and 61 points, set in the 2021-22 and 2018-19 seasons respectively.

But Vancouver and their captain don’t appear to be on the same page when it comes to the necessary contract that would be needed to keep him around. One reason is the eight-year contract extension J.T. Miller was signed to this offseason, making him the Canucks’ highest paid player starting next year. In total, the Canucks have $35 million tied to nine forwards for next season, compared to $40.2 million tied to 13 forwards this year as per Capfriendly.

“The Canucks have stretched it to as far as they could go, as of right now, I believe they have gone as far as they can go,” Canucks insider Rick Dhaliwal said last month on Donnie and Dhali. “The Canucks will now take the best offer for Bo.”

Vancouver, clearly, has their work cut out for them ahead of the March 3 trade deadline to figure out exactly what they’ll do with Horvat.

Adam LaskarisAdam Laskaris

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