On Monday, the Canucks struck a deal with Las Vegas to acquiring defenceman Nate Schmidt. Earlier in the day, the Golden Knights signed free agencies big fish, Alex Pietrangelo meaning cap space had to be cleared and Nate Schmidt was the odd man out.
Now when a top-four defenceman gets traded there are usually big pieces involved. Fortunately for the Canucks they did not have to send major pieces over to Vegas. The deal was Nate Schmidt in exchange for a third-round draft pick. Adding to the fact, that third-round pick is not a 2021 pick it is a 2022 pick. Looking at that off the jump Vancouver seems to have the upper hand on this deal.
Getting to Know Nate Schmidt’s Game
Nate Schmidt was an undrafted free agent in 2013, he played his collegiate career with the Minnesota Golden Gophers. In 2013 he signed with the Washington Capitals and played with them until 2017 where he was left exposed in the expansion draft, resulting in him being selected by the Golden Knights. During his time with Washington, he played with new Canuck goaltender Braden Holtby. After Schmidt’s name was called in the expansion draft Holtby looked visibly upset.
Since Schmidt entered the league has played in 396 games, tailing 140 points 26 of which being on the power play. Throughout his three-year tenure in Las Vegas, he averaged 21:59 of ice time. Come playoff time he would average 23:34, showing he can play big minutes which is a huge plus for the Canucks.
Fit in Vancouver
After the unfortunate departure of defencemen Chris Tanev and Troy Stetcher, everyone anticipated a move. Now the Canucks have gotten a new blueliner in Nate Schmidt, where does he fit? Fortunately for Vancouver Schmidt plays both the left and right side of the blue line making him interchangeable.
As of now, full expectations are that Schmidt will line up alongside Quinn Hughes. Aside from his play on the ice Schmidt is supposedly a great locker room guy, along with loved by the media.
On a personal note I'm really going to miss talking to Nate Schmidt.
He is hilarious. You all know that. But he's also incredibly insightful & genuinely tries to answer every question you ask. Whether it was after an exhilarating win or a devastating loss, he's always a pro.
— Jesse Granger (@JesseGranger_) October 13, 2020
Welcome to Vancouver Schmidt
Vancouver may not have had the offseason fans hoped, but it has come with a pleasant surprise. That surprise is a gift that fell into the Canucks lap. Getting a top-pairing defenceman for a future mid-round draft pick was the best-case scenario for the cap-strapped Canucks team. Vancouver welcomes Nate Schmidt with open arms. Fans all around beautiful British Columbia and have full faith that he will be a driving force on route to the Canucks first Stanley Cup.
Follow me on Twitter @cdemp45 for more of my content!
Come discuss this and much more at the Overtime Heroics forums!