Brock Boeser doesn’t know what his future holds, but he’d like it to be in Vancouver, as a member of the Canucks.
The 23-year-old has increasingly become the subject of trade rumours, which began to flare up this summer.
Despite Canucks GM Jim Benning emphatically denying that Boeser was the subject of trade consideration, saying “somebody made that up” in response to a question in July, the talk is still out there.
“I don’t think I’m going to get traded, but obviously rumours are going to happen and stuff’s going to be out in the media,” Boeser said today. “I love Vancouver, I love the guys I play with, I love the organization, the fans. I want to be a Canuck.”
“I think our team is right there and we can win a Stanley Cup in the next couple years. I truly believe that and I think our coaching staff and our teammates believe that as well. I want to be a Canuck and I want to stay in Vancouver.”
Many have connected the dots between Boeser and his home state of Minnesota, with Matt Dumba a logical return piece given the Canucks’ need for a top-four defenceman. Just 26 years old, Dumba would certainly be an attractive piece to the Canucks, though it remains to be seen if they’re willing to part with Boeser to get him.
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Moving Boeser would be a bold and potentially dangerous move. Beloved by fans, Boeser appears to be close friends with many players that make up the Canucks’ core group of young players. He also has on-ice chemistry with Elias Pettersson.
Despite acquisitions of wingers like J.T. Miller and Tyler Toffoli, the team should be careful about trading a player like Boeser. Injuries prevented Boeser from reaching the 30-goal plateau in his first two NHL seasons, and despite notching only 16 goals in 57 games last season, it says something about his potential if people consider 45 points in 57 games to be an off-year.
If the Canucks are going to become a Stanley Cup contender, they’re going to need a deep defence, but they’re also going to need players like Boeser playing in their top six.
During an 11-game goalless streak, Boeser was dropped to the third line, which was a frustrating experience but also a learning experience.
“When you’re not scoring goals, you gotta figure out ways to help the team any way you can.”
But ultimately Boeser is a goal-scorer and he knows that. He said he’s going to be focused on shooting the puck more, so look for improvements in that area to come next season.
“When I shoot the puck, it drives my game,” he said.
Boeser spoke about how the playoffs were a really good experience for this young Canucks team, and he’s bullish on their future.
“It was really eye-opening for our group to see how far we’ve come and I really think we’re right there. We were so close to the being in the (Conference) Finals. That’s exciting for our group.”
Boeser, who produced 11 points in 17 playoff games, said he was happy with the way he played in the postseason, pointing to his commitment to a “200-foot game.”
“Our mindset next year throughout the whole season is we can beat anyone. I think that we proved it in the playoffs… We’re definitely going to be a confident group coming into next year and make another run at the Cup.”