Canucks re-sign Dakota Joshua to 4-year, $13 million contract: How the deal got done


The Vancouver Canucks have continued to hit on sensible moves in advance of the NHL draft this week.

On Thursday morning, the club announced a four-year, $13 million deal with rugged winger Dakota Joshua.

 

Joshua, 28, was one of the NHL’s most frequent hitters last season and broke out offensively with 18 goals and 32 points despite missing an extended stretch with a hand injury sustained during a fight. Joshua then played top-six minutes for Vancouver in the postseason, adding eight more points while appearing in every game of the club’s playoff run.

There was some expectation in the industry that Joshua would’ve had a robust market if he’d made it to July 1. His unique profile as a productive scoring forward with size, grit and special teams utility (Joshua has developed into a plus penalty killer in Vancouver over the past two seasons) would’ve made him something of a unicorn middle-six winger on the open market, precisely the sort of player over whom bidding wars can often ensue.

Throughout this negotiation, however, which was difficult at times, Joshua’s preference had been to remain in Vancouver with a Canucks organization that gave him a shot as a Group VI unrestricted free agent back in the summer of 2022. And with some additional cap flexibility carved out as a result of a painless deal to send Ilya Mikheyev’s cap hit to the Chicago Blackhawks, the Canucks were able to get close enough to convince Joshua to bypass the free agent frenzy.

The deal represents a significant raise for Joshua, whose career earnings sit in the $1.6 million dollar range according to estimates at CapFriendly.com. It also represents a team-friendly settlement from a Vancouver perspective. If Joshua is able to carve out a regular top-six role, or cement himself as a regular power-play option at the net front, there’s a straightforward path to him providing value to the Canucks in excess of $3.25 million over the next few seasons. Even if he only remains a high-end third-line contributor with penalty-killing value and a unique physical profile, however, he’s likely to pay off a $3.25 million valuation.

“Dakota had a strong season for us and took some big steps forward in his game,” said Allvin. “We really like his size, his speed and physicality. He fit in well with our system and the way we want to play hockey and I look forward to watching him to continue to develop under our coaching staff.”

(Photo: Derek Cain / Getty Images)





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