Photograph by: Jeff Vinnick , NHL via Getty Images Files
NEWARK, N.J.-- With the NHL Draft getting underway on Sunday afternoon, “splashes” were bound to be made. The only question was: When would these splashes occur? The New Jersey Devils did not waste anytime exciting the hometown crowd, sending the ninth overall pick north of the border to the Vancouver Canucks in exchange for goaltender and Boston College alum Cory Schneider, according to a report from NHL.com.
Vancouver used the ninth pick to select center Bo Horvat, who played for the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League last season. In addition, this trade means that Roberto Luongo will remain the No. 1 goaltender for the Canucks.
"Today's decision was made after a thorough review of our options and in the interest of improving this team long-term through the draft and development of players," Canucks general manager Mike Gillis said in a statement. "We appreciate the high level of professionalism and conduct both Cory and Roberto have shown while continuing to help this team be competitive. I would like to personally thank Cory for his contributions to our team and wish him the very best and a bright future."
For Vancouver, getting into the top 10 in the draft was very important.
"We explored every option we possibly could with our goaltending situation," Canucks general manager Mike Gillis told TSN. "And we felt strongly enough to make this move to get a great young player like Bo."
Horvat notched 33 goals last season to go along with 28 assists for a total of 61 points. 17 of those goals came on the powerplay, which was a team-high. His contributions were a big part of why London finished first in the OHL standings. However, it was under the bright lights of the Ontario Hockey League Championship that he shined the most. He had a total of 16 goals and 7 assists for a total of 23 points in 21 games.
Schneider went 17-9 last season and recorded five shutouts. In the playoffs, he hit a bumpy road as he went 0-2 and tailed a 4.62 GAA. However, his regular season statistics really opened some eyes. The Marblehead, Mass. native spent three years between the pipes for the Boston College Eagles and his best season came in 2005-06. That year he posted a 24-13-2 record, which included eight shutout performances.
This trade works out for both parties. Vancouver gets an explosive playmaker while the Devils get a proven goaltender that is more than ready to take on the starting role. It will be interesting to see what other deals happen throughout the offseason.