Important update on Filip Hronek contract talks: Arbitration the solution?

Felip Gosselin
June 10, 2024  (6:56 PM)

Filip Hronek skating
Photo credit: TSN

Since the moment Elias Pettersson signed his extension, the Canucks' focus has switched to the next big thing, Filip Hronek. Everyone has been all over it, hoping to find a positive update for Quinn Hughes' d-partner.

Hronek had a breakout season this year alongside Quinn Hughes, who could be considered the league's best defenceman. The Czech defenseman's contract is ending, and he'll be a restricted free agent on July 1st. Since the moment the Canucks' Super Swede inked his deal, the focus has switched to Hronek, and there's been no positive update or traction in that regard since then.
The Canucks tendered a first offer to Hronek in the low 6s, but it didn't cut it, as he's clearly after more money. The reports then came out suggesting that Hronek would be looking to sign a career contract from 6 to 8 years in the neighbourhood of $8M annually, which is too much for the Canucks.
There have been tons of reports here and there, and Hronek's agent, Allan Walsh, eventually came out on a podcast to deny everything and take a laugh at Vancouver's market for their obsession with the Canucks' next big contract. On the Donnie and Dhali show, Don Taylor and Rick Dhaliwal ripped into his agent for his comments, and Dhaliwal then proceeded to drop an important development on the case suggesting that this deal was headed straight for arbitration:
Taylor and Dhaliwal ripped Walsh for his comments on his podcast about how the Vancouver market is obsessed with the Hronek negotiations.

Dhaliwal on Hronek:

"I think this is heading into arbitration"

The results could be catastrophic for the Canucks if they ended up going to arbitration; it could lead Hronek straight to free agency at the end of his one-year deal:
The arbitrator can only award a 1 or 2 year contract. The party that did not elect the arbitration selects the term (if the player selected arbitration, the team selects 1 or 2 year term). Players that are only 1 year away from being a UFA can only have a 1 year contract awarded.

- Puck Pedia

If that were the case and Filip Hronek wound up signing a one-year deal, it would lead him straight to unrestricted free agency. The defenceman scored a career-high 48 points in 81 games and played a vital part in the Canucks season through the whole season; if they decided to let him go, they'd definitely need a viable replacement. The list of potential players to replace him isn't long.
10 JUIN   |   1313 ANSWERS
Important update on Filip Hronek contract talks: Arbitration the solution?

Should the Canucks do everything to avoid arbitration for Filip Hronek?

Yes, get it done before51138.9 %
No, it'll put him back in his place80261.1 %
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