Canucks training camp is coming to a close and the preseason is about to begin. Accordingly, the Canucks have made the first round of cuts to their roster.
Every season, Pass it to Bulis is here to explain each cut, as some of them can be quite contentious. The Canucks are going to have to make some hard decisions in the next couple weeks that could include trades, putting a talented young player on waivers, or sending down rookies that look NHL-ready.
On Monday, however, the cuts came easy, as do the explanations.
The only player on a Canucks contract that was cut is Michael Carcone and it’s not hard to understand why. Carcone may be a fireplug, with speed, grit, and finish around the net, but he’s also just 5’9” and undersized players generally need to do a lot more to prove themselves. Thus far, he hasn’t done enough yet in the AHL to earn a longer look in the NHL.
At 22, there are a lot of younger players jumping into the system that could land ahead of him on the depth chart, like Jonathan Dahlen, Kole Lind, and the similarly undersized Petrus Palmu. At this point, Carcone is facing a tough task if he wants to one day play in the NHL.
That said, Carcone is a solid AHL player. He had 15 goals and 27 points in 68 games in his second season with the Comets, good for 7th on the team in scoring. He should be a good third-line forward for the Comets, capable of playing up the lineup when injuries or call-ups occur.
Aside from Carcone, the Canucks also released nine players from tryout contracts and assigned eight of them to Comets training camp in Utica. Here’s the press release from the Canucks:
The following players have been released from their respective tryout contracts and will attend the Utica Comets Training Camp:
- Ben Betker, Defenceman
- Tanner MacMaster, Forward
- Reid Gardiner, Right Wing
- Vincent Arseneau, Left Wing
- Brendan Woods, Centre
- Brandon Anselmini, Defenceman
- Jaime Sifers, Defenceman
- Dylan Blujus, Defenceman
The following player has been assigned to the Utica Comets:
- Michael Carcone, Right Wing
The following player has been released from his tryout contract:
- Garrett McFadden, Defenceman
The name that Canucks fans might want to keep in the back of their minds is Tanner MacMaster. The centre showed well for the Comets at the end of last season and should land in a top-six role this season.
MacMaster is a talented playmaker and will likely be setting up the Canucks’ prospect wingers for some goals in the AHL. A strong season in Utica could eventually mean a Canucks contract for MacMaster, though he’s definitely a longshot to have an impact in the NHL.