It’s the summer of the RFA. Around the league, a number of high profile restricted free agents remain unsigned by their respective clubs. Brock Boeser gets most of the attention around these parts, but the Canucks have another unsigned RFA who we’ll be turning our attention to this week.

Nikolay Goldobin is coming off a career year, but his future in Vancouver is uncertain. His carelessness away from the puck hasn’t endeared him to the coaching staff, and he hasn’t been consistent enough offensively to justify his lacklustre defensive play. His chemistry with Elias Pettersson hasn’t been enough to solidify a spot for him in the lineup, and there isn’t a clear spot for him in the top six. With a crowded roster and a front office looking to shed salary, he could be an attractive piece to add as a sweetener in a potential Brandon Sutter or Loui Eriksson deal.

How would you handle Nikolay Goldobin? Where would you like to see him play next season?

Last week I asked: Would you have extended Jim Benning? Do you think he will remain with the organization following the 2019-20 season? 


I like the extension. GMJB had a lot of legacy contracts and the Twins still playing at the beginning of his tenure. Now that the youth movement is in full swing, he deserves to see it through. Benning and the staff have a record of middle round finds and FA signings, which is the way a team can stay a long Stanley Cup contender. Having a wave of young ELC players supporting a talented core extends the cores window.

Killer Marmot:

Aquilini can fire Benning at any time — it’ll just cost him to do so. What Aquilini gets by extending Benning is a manager who can focus on the club without some needless distractions, and who has an incentive to think beyond next season. So yes, extending Benning’s contract made sense.

Do I think Benning will be let go at the end of this season? The magic number is, I’m guessing, around 88. If the Canucks can get that many points then Benning’s job is secure for another year.


There’s a lot JB has done I don’t like, but a scarier proposition is wondering who is actually available to replace him and what that change would then entail.

If he can undo a few of his mistakes— mainly Eriksson and Sutter — then it might not be sunshine, lollipops and parades, but at least the cap space would be there to make some positive moves if this team shows it has the legs to compete. It would also remove a bit of the stink some of the players he has acquired have developed.

If Myers, Miller, Ferland and Benn are the worst (or the best) he has done this season then yeah to the extension. If he can offload a couple of his previous stinkers, then he’s definitely earned the chance to try to build a winner.

Defenceman Factory:

Yes I would have extended Benning but for 2 years not 3.

I think Benning did a reasonable job signing the UFAs available this off season. He made the financially astute move with Hutton, nailed his 1st 3 draft picks (great piece on Keppen the other day on HockeyBuzz) and put together a squad capable of finishing in a playoff spot.

Benning has yet to demonstrate the ingenuity he will need to finish off his roster. There were other ways to shore up the right side D that were cheaper (and in my opinion better long term) than signing Myers.

I would have Benning on a relatively short leash. I want to see his efforts prove out with the team performing well and challenging for playoffs. Perhaps more importantly I want to see him move out Sutter and perhaps additional surplus wingers before the draft and Eriksson before this time next year.

This has been Benning’s first offseason without Linden. We just aren’t privy to how different Linden’s vision was and what his role was in the UFA signings Benning is most criticized for. The UFA signings this off season look different than previous years. If they don’t turn out better, Benning doesn’t get his young stars signed or Benning doesn’t show some creativity in trades I’d find someone else to finish off this roster. The window for the Canucks is just opening. When Podkolzin hits the ice here in 2 years that window needs to be wide open.


What`s worse than Benning doubling down on past mistakes? Aquilini doing it.