Trading Loui Eriksson for Milan Lucic isn’t just a wild trade proposal you hear from callers to sports talk radio stations, it’s something that Vancouver Canucks management may have considered.
This is according to Jason Gregor, a reporter with TSN 1200 in Edmonton, during a Tuesday morning interview on the Halford and Brough Show on TSN 1040.
“I heard from a really good source that Jim Benning and his staff did sit down and discuss a Loui Eriksson for Milan Lucic trade,” Gregor said. “That I’ve been told from a very good source that indeed that conversation happened.”
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Gregor went on to add that the conversation took place sometime in the last couple of months.
It seems that Milan Lucic will forever be linked to the Vancouver Canucks.
An East Van native who starred for the Vancouver Giants in junior, Lucic became the enemy during the 2011 Stanley Cup Final while a member of the Boston Bruins.
He considered signing with the Canucks as a free agent in 2016, before inking a seven-year, $42 million contract with the Edmonton Oilers instead. The Canucks signed Loui Eriksson to a six-year, $36 million contract the same day.
Both players have been huge disappointments in their respective cities, so many have theorized that a problem-for-problem trade could make sense for both teams.
Though they each have matching $6 million cap hits, Lucic is signed until 2023, while Eriksson is only on the books until 2022. The other problem with Lucic is the no-movement clause in his contract.
Lucic has a full no-movement clause until June 1, 2021, at which time he can be traded to a list of 10 teams of his choice. But the no-movement portion remains intact for all non-trade transactions, which is a major issue should he need to be protected in the Seattle expansion draft scheduled for June 2021.
Eriksson, conversely, has a no-trade clause in his contract until the end of next season. Beginning in the summer of 2020, Eriksson can submit a 15-team no-trade list. He is not required to be protected for an expansion draft.
All this isn’t to say that an Eriksson-Lucic swap can’t happen, it just makes it more complicated. The extra year on Lucic’s deal makes him more of a liability than Eriksson, despite the three-year age gap in both players Lucic turns 31 in June, Eriksson turns 34 in July). That means the Oilers would need to sweeten the deal, likely in the form of retaining salary or giving up draft picks.
Reading between the lines, both players seem like they would welcome a change of scenery.
Lucic said recently that everything that happened in 2011 is “water under the bridge,” adding that he still dreams of playing for his hometown team.
Eriksson, for his part, expressed his unhappiness with his role under Canucks head coach Travis Green recently in a Swedish-language interview.
There are question marks with both players, given their drop in production. Lucic scored 50 points during his first season in Edmonton, but saw his totals drop to 34 points two years ago, and 20 points last year. Eriksson has scored 24, 23, and 29 points in each of his three seasons in Vancouver, respectively.