The Vancouver Canucks surprised fans earlier this week when they dealt prospect Hunter Shinkaruk for depth centre Markus Granlund – and now, the team has made a potential second acquisition with their deal for the rights of defenseman Philip Larsen.
Edmonton trades the rights of Philip Larsen to Vancouver for a 5th round pick in 2017. Larsen is in the KHL. #TradeCentre
— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) February 25, 2016
Drafted 149th overall in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft by the Dallas Stars, the now-26 year old Larsen played in 125 NHL games before departing for the KHL at the start of the 2014-15 season. The 6 foot 1, 183 lbs Danish-born blue liner is having an excellent season with Jokerit Helsinki. His 12 goals and 38 points in 54 games put him third in scoring on his club and first among defensemen, and he finished the regular season fifth in scoring among all defenseman across the KHL altogether.
The Canucks acquire the potential rights to bring him back into the league for a late round pick in not this draft, but the following one. His power play contributions for Jokerit this year suggest that if the Canucks wanted to bring him back to North America, he may not be a poor option – while it’s just a maybe for the club, it’s a nice maybe to have.
Update: Per TSN’s Bob McKenzie, it looks like we’ll see Larsen next year:
VAN intends to sign Larsen on July 1 and have him join the NHL team for the 2016-17 season. #tradecentre #TSN
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) February 25, 2016