Canucks asked Edler about waiving no-trade clause before deadline

Feb 25 2019, 11:49 pm

It’s the question Canucks fans have been asking for months. Maybe years.

Would Alex Edler be willing to waive his no-trade clause?

On Monday, after the NHL trade deadline came and went, we got an answer: no. At least not for the options presented to him.

Canucks GM Jim Benning revealed that Edler had been approached about waiving his no-trade clause after some teams asked about his availability in a potential trade.

“Some teams phoned and asked about his availability,” Benning said at a media conference this afternoon. “We contacted the agent and [Edler] wouldn’t waive his no-trade. There were no options for us there, but Alex has been a great player for us for a long time and we’d like for him to continue to be part of our team.”

Edler was asked about waiving his no-trade clause “three or four days ago,” according to Benning, who would still like to get a contract extension signed with the 32-year-old defenceman.

“We’ve negotiated in good faith with [Edler] and his agent to try to get a deal done. Obviously it hasn’t gotten finished off yet. We’re going to continue to work on trying to get the deal done.”

Edler is in the final year of a contract paying him $5 million. All reports to date have indicated that he wants to stay in Vancouver, so you can understand why he wouldn’t want to facilitate a trade.

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“He’s earned the right to have a no-trade in his contract,” said Benning. “We told him the teams that have called on him. If he would have waived his no-trade to want to go to one of those teams then we would have tried to figure out a deal for him. That didn’t happen. We’re still excited to have him and be part of our group, hopefully, moving forward.”

Benning made two trades on deadline day, dealing Erik Gudbranson to Pittsburgh for Tanner Pearson, as well as sending Jonathan Dahlen to San Jose for Linus Karlsson.

Edler has been out of the Canucks’ lineup since February 4 with a concussion, but is back skating and could return to game action soon. Vancouver has struggled without him, winning just two of their last nine games since his injury. The Canucks are now six points back of a playoff spot with 20 games to go.