Yesterday, we spoke about the benefits of keeping JT Miller on the roster and working to extend him because of the impact he has on the Canucks. Today, we address a potential trade.
Of all the speculation swirling around a potential JT Miller trade, no name has appeared more often than the right side D-man, John Marino. Furthermore, few teams have shown more interest in JT Miller than the New Jersey Devils. On Saturday, July 16th, a trade went down between the Penguins and Devils that saw defenseman Ty Smith heading to Pittsburgh in return for Marino and a 2023 3rd rounder.
So, what does this mean for the Canucks?
My initial reaction was; “Well, looks like Marino is off the table”… But upon further reflection and some beer-induced day-dreaming I started to think that maybe… just maybe… something is brewing between the Canucks and Devils that could involve Marino coming to beeeeaaaaauuuutiful Van City.
The Canucks acquiring Marino would tick a huge box on their to-do list – a young (25) and capable right hand defenseman on a sensible $4.4m contract that takes him through to the 2026-2027 season fits the profile of what Vancouver needs. Beyond the fit in Vancouver, New Jersey appears to have been kicking tires on JT Miller for a while now, but lacked the pieces (or willingness to move blue-chip players) to get something done. With the addition of Marino, not only can the Devils dangle one RHD as bait, but toss Damon Severson, a 27 year old right and defenseman, into the mix – things get interesting.
All of a sudden, the Devils (who have $12m in cap space and could likely afford to extend JT Miller) are in a position to offer up two players that Canucks management are very interested in.
Surely, I could be out to lunch on this one, but is it possible that Marino was acquired simply to get a JT Miller trade done?
Let’s assume for a second that those cheeky Devils have a plan. What would that trade look like? You could fathom both Marino (4.4m p/yr) and Severson (4.17m p/yr) heading west for JT Miller – but that would also mean Vancouver would need to shed about 3m in cap space to be compliant by training camp. Maybe you throw in a forward, of which the Canucks have a plethora of, like Tanner Pearson or Jason Dickenson to make the numbers work? Toss in a pick and – who the fuck knows?
Does this swap seem realistic?
|To Vancouver||To New Jersey|
|John Marino ($4.4m)|
Damon Severson (4.17m)
2023 3rd Round Pick
|JT Miller ($5.250m)|
Tanner Pearson ($3.250m)
The Canucks add much needed depth on their back end and address the gaping right side with 2 very capable options – either one of which could provide Quinn Hughes with a long-term partner. The Devils add an offensive juggernaut who would be a huge upgrade on the wing on their first or second line, and acquire a reliable middle-6 veteran winger (with a couple of cups on his resume) who can log responsible minutes including powerplay and penalty kill time. The money going either way is more-or-less balanced. Seems to me like both squads could benefit from a deal like this.
This defensive depth chart would look pretty friggin’ solid to me:
|Quinn Hughes (22)||Damon Severson (27)|
|Travis Dermott (25)||John Marino (25)|
|Oliver Ekman-Larsson (31)||Tyler Myers (32)|
|Jack Rathbone (23)||Luke Schenn (32)|
|Kyle Burroughs (27)||Tucker Poolman (29)|