While we’re sure that the Andrew Raycroft years in Vancouver are going to be remembered fondly, it’s now time for the permanent prospect in the Canucks system to take over the role as Roberto Luongo’s backup. The Canucks locked in Cory Schneider to a new deal.
The Canucks agreed to terms with the former first-round draft pick on Wednesday. Schneider, 24, is expected to be Roberto Luongo’s caddy next season, after playing 10 NHL games over the last two seasons.
The Canucks are hoping that Schneider, a Marblehead, Mass., native, pushes Luongo, and creates more trade value in his first full-fledged NHL campaign. Luongo is under contracts for the next 12 years, while Schneider has dominated the American Hockey League for the last three seasons.
Schneider isn’t just an American, he’s also a former college kid as he played at Boston College. Schneider has been outstanding in the AHL with the Manitoba Moose posting fantastic numbers with the Moose through his last three seasons in the minors. As for the deal itself, it’s for two years worth a total of $1.8 million and it’s a one-way deal meaning that Schneider is there to stay or else he goes through waivers to go back down.
The only question remaining now is how many games will he get to start. Getting Roberto Luongo a break more often than not could pay off in the playoffs for the Canucks. Luongo this past season played in 68 games and that’s not counting all the work he had during the Olympics. The ultimate aim here for Vancouver should be to get Schneider about 20 starts during the year. If Luongo ends up playing in 70 games again, it’s detrimental to both him and Schneider because they’ll be on the opposite ends of wasting away.
Looks as though slumping Dallas winger Valeri Nichushkin could be a healthy scratch tonight when the Stars host the Oilers at American Airlines.
Per the Morning-News, Nichushkin — who barely played in the second and third periods of Saturday’s 6-3 loss to Colorado — is likely to be replaced by Colton Sceviour in the lineup.
Stars head coach Lindy Ruff was fuming after the Avs defeat, calling it “embarrassing, worse than disappointing.” It didn’t take a genius to realize one of the players in his doghouse was Nichushkin, who had just 2:02 of ice time in the second period and 3:24 in the third.
Yesterday, Ruff dropped Nichushkin to the fourth line in practice.
“I’ve been trying to help him by shifting him around,” the head coach explained. “He had some struggles early in camp on right wing, so I put him on left, and he doesn’t seem real comfortable at left right now.
“His game, everything has got to get a little bit quicker.”
The 10th overall pick in 2013, Nichushkin has struggled to build on the form shown in his rookie campaign, when he scored 14 goals and 34 points in 79 contests.
He missed nearly all of last season with a linger hip ailment and has been a virtual non-factor through the first two games this year.
When the Los Angeles Kings announced they’d settled with Mike Richards, it didn’t take long for the accusations of salary-cap circumvention to materialize.
And though NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly was adamant that the settlement was “far from” circumvention, apparently not everyone agrees with the league in that regard.
“Privately, other teams are screaming bloody murder and are threatening to make an issue about it at December’s Board of Governors’ meeting,” Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reports.
Friedman goes into more detail in his story, so click the link to read more.
But remember how we wrote that the issue in this case was precedent, and that the “NHL and NHLPA can’t allow teams to escape onerous contracts through a back door”?
Well, one agent posed a good question to Friedman: “What’s to stop other teams from trying this?”