Rutherford confirms the team is tanking

Felip Gosselin
January 16, 2023  (3:37 PM)

The Vancouver fanbase has been screaming for the team to tank in order to increase their chances of drafting this year's top prospect and North Vancouver product, Connor Bedard. In this morning's press conference, Rutherford answered every questions.

Rutherford was quite generous in his interview this morning when he took the time to properly answer every question that came his way. The season has taken lots of different roads and the closer we get to the deadline, the further away the Canucks are from the playoffs. Rutherford was highly critical of the job he had done so far:
"I'm disappointed in the job I've done to this point, said Rutherford. When I first came here I talked about getting control of the cap getting rid of some contracts and we haven't been able to do that."

Rutherford went ahead and stated that the strategy for the next few years had not changed and didn't want to use the word rebuild but more like a retool (yet again). He stated that they weren't looking to acquire Draft Picks, but they prefer to look into young players.
The conversation then switched to the next draft, which features a local-grown possible generational talent in Connor Bedard. Rutherford was asked whether or not he'd do his best to get the 1st overall pick:
"I'll say the obvious. We all want the first overall pick. This year of all years."

Rutherford was clear on his stand though, that he would never ask a coach and his players to willingly throw a game, but he opened the possibility of taking different roster decisions. He cited that Nils Aman, Nils Hoglander, and Vasily Podkolzin were part of this process. This led us to believe that even though they're better players than some of whom are still in the NHL, it'd be better for their development to gather confidence in the AHL and help the Canucks get a better shot at Bedard.
So to answer the question, the Canucks will never willingly lose a game, though from the knowledge we acquired, we can believe that Abbotsford will have a really strong lineup for the rest of the season and Thatcher Demko will not return unless he's 120%. Getting Bedard would definitely go a long way for a retool instead of a rebuild.
SOURCE: The Athletic
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Rutherford confirms the team is tanking

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