Despite a ton of activity going on behind the scenes, one thing will remain constant.
Jim Benning will return as general manager of the Vancouver Canucks next season, according to a report from Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
Not sure what to expect for a timeline of announcements from the Canucks, but word tonight is Jim Benning was given indication in the last 24 hours that he is to return.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) May 19, 2021
Friedman is reporting that Benning was given “indication” in the last 24 hours that he will return for an eighth season in charge of the Canucks.
Earlier in the day multiple reports connected Henrik and Daniel Sedin to potential roles in management, though it doesn’t appear that they will be top-level positions. There had also been multiple reports wondering about Benning’s job security, as ownership was apparently looking at their options.
Many Canucks fans online are furious with the decision, as #FireBenning is trending topic on Twitter in Vancouver once again. That same hashtag was displayed on a banner that was flown around the city in an airplane, paid for by Canucks fans, last month.
Francesco Aquilini has shown incredible patience with Benning, who he hired seven years ago.
The Canucks are not only set to miss the playoffs for the fifth time in seven seasons, they’ll finish dead-last in the North Division if they don’t win tomorrow’s season finale. Since the 2015-16 season, only the Buffalo Sabres, Detroit Red Wings, and Ottawa Senators have a worse winning percentage than Vancouver (.471).
The Canucks will likely have a tough time improving next season as well, given their precarious salary cap situation, and the fact that Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes need new contracts.