Just when we thought that Vancouver Canucks seriously decided to sit out this year’s offseason, they went on and made a big move. The team announced on Tuesday that they have acquired veteran defenseman Nate Schmidt in a trade with Vegas Golden Knights.
Canucks sent a third-rounder in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft to Golden Knights in exchange for Schmidt.
While not a franchise-altering move, the acquisition of Schmidt is a great pickup for Vancouver. The 29-year-old defenseman is a proven player in the league and is expected to be a valuable member of the rotation. Also, he’ll provide Canucks with a badly needed depth amid the departures of Chris Tanev and Troy Stecher.
“Nate has been one of the top defencemen in our division in recent years,” said Vancouver’s general manager Jim Benning. “He’s a dynamic player who competes hard all over the ice. I think he will be a really good fit in our group.”
Golden Knights, on the other hand, were not so interested in a draft pick as in getting some salary relief. By shipping Nate Schmidt, Vegas can now finalize the signing of defenseman Alex Pietrangelo and give themselves the luxury of considering other moves.
Over the course of his NHL career, Schmidt suited up for Washington Capitals and Golden Knights. He has 29 goals and 111 assists for a total of 140 points in 396 games in the league.