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The Vancouver Canucks lost their best penalty-killing defenceman this offseason when the Calgary Flames signed Chris Tanev.

Tanev was the first guy over the boards to kill penalties for the Canucks. Himself and Alex Edler killed a ridiculous amount of minutes last season and now some newcomers will have to help fill the void that Tanev left.

Edler and Tanev were out there a lot and did a pretty good job keeping the puck out of the net this past season. Let’s dive into who the Canucks can now rely on to kill penalties going forward.

Alex Edler

The Canucks know exactly what they have in Edler. He will block a ton of shots, clear the puck when it’s around him and though his skating has taken a dip, he brings some physicality on the boards when he needs to.

Edler will likely be on the first penalty kill unit again this season, his partner will just be different than it has been in the past 5-8 years.

Tyler Myers

He was brought in to bring offence but with Nate Schmidt and Quinn Hughes on the team, Tyler Myers will likely be asked to be a part of the first penalty kill unit now. Myers was third on the Canucks last season for shorthanded ice time with 112:10. If he is able to stay out of the penalty box, he will be relied upon to kill a lot more minutes this season.

Myers has a lower goals per 60 and expected goals per 60 than Edler and Tanev last season. His long stick helps him take up space on the penalty kill but his inability to make quick decisions will hurt him.

He’s not the best option but he’s all they got!

Nate Schmidt and Quinn Hughes

Though you don’t want to use either of them in penalty killing situations, you will likely have to have one do the job.

It’s not going to be Hughes, he only killed four minutes last season and you don’t want him out there risking injury by blocking shots. As a result, we could see Schmidt doing some of the penalty-killing dirty work. Schmidt was fourth on the Golden Knights in time shorthanded last season.

He doesn’t have great career numbers as a penalty killer but he will be used on the second unit this season if the third pairing does not consist of two penalty killers.

Olli Juolevi and Jordie Benn

Benn was a staple on the second penalty kill unit when he was in the lineup for the Canucks. I don’t see that storyline changing at all this season. If he is in the lineup, he is killing penalties.

Benn should make this team just off of his ability to play both sides and kill penalties.

Olli Juolevi plays his best hockey on the penalty kill. He was a shot-blocking beast in Utica last season and he is ready to contribute at the NHL level.

If Juolevi and Benn are the third pairing for the Canucks at the beginning of the season, that would mean that both Hughes and Schmidt would be able to take a break while the team is shorthanded.

On top of that, we can see a Hughes-Schmidt shift after each penalty kill and I am so down for that.

Ashton Sautner, Jalen Chatfield and Guillaume Brisebois

All three of these guys killed penalties in the AHL. They can be used in a pinch over a player like Hughes and potentially Schmidt too. If I had to rank them, I would say that Sautner is the most NHL ready penalty killer followed by Brisebois and Chatfield.

Brogan Rafferty

He didn’t kill penalties in Utica last season so if the opening night third pairing is Benn-Rafferty as I predict, that means that Nate Schmidt will likely be killing penalties.

Here’s how I see the opening night penalty kill defensive pairings shaking out:

Edler Myers
Schmidt Benn