Darren Dreger was on Winnipeg’s TSN 1290 on Wednesday afternoon.
Following a discussion on how the third, fourth, and fifth overall draft picks ‘could definitely be in play,’ which ended with Dreger saying this:
“Vancouver is similar. Vancouver likes fifth overall. They know they’re getting a very, very good player, but Jim Benning did not like being part of the non-playoff picture in the National Hockey League. He’s going to do whatever it takes to make sure that doesn’t happen again.”
On it being hard to figure out what’s happening in Vancouver, because from one perspective it looks like they should be ready for a tear down and a rebuild, but it doesn’t look like management sees it that way, and they want to get better quickly:
“Yeah, that’s my read on it as well. I talk a fair bit with Jim Benning. He’s one of the good guys in the National Hockey League. I learn a lot when I talk to him, because he comes from a heavily-scouted background, right? I mean, that’s where the passion comes from in Jim Benning. He loves this time of year. He loves spending time in the rinks, getting to know the young players, how they’re developing, looking at the draft-eligible class, and all of those things.
“As I said earlier, no general manager, coach or player enjoys being part of the crop of teams that doesn’t make the playoffs. In Vancouver’s case, it feels like they’re ripe for a full-on renovation, but they haven’t quite embraced that yet, and it doesn’t sound like they’re going to.
“They made an interesting trade involving McCann and Gudbranson. Vancouver is going to be a little bit better, but I think there’s a lot of work to get done there yet before they’re moving closer to the playoffs.”
Source: TSN 1290/Transcript: Nichols