When it comes to the trade deadline, one thing you can count on is a proactive approach from the Jim Rutherford-led front office.

Just over a year ago, the Canucks made headlines by trading Bo Horvat right before he was set to represent them at the All-Star Game. Fast forward to this year and they have once again struck a deal, this time acquiring Elias Lindholm from the Calgary Flames just before he was to represent them in the All-Star festivities. It’s now been one year plus a day since that Horvat trade and the Canucks have gone from being considered a long shot for the playoffs with an uncertain future, to sitting at the top of the NHL standings.

This is the second trade between the Canucks and Flames this season, with GMs Rutherford and Patrik Allvin completing a deal with rookie Flames GM Craig Conroy back in November for defenceman Nikita Zadorov. Interestingly, Zadorov is already being mentioned in trade talks once again.

The recent trade is a clear indication that the Canucks are confident in their pursuit of a playoff spot in 2024. With Zadorov already providing size and physicality on the third defensive pairing, Lindholm adds even more strength to the top-six. He and J.T. Miller are expected to fill the top two center positions, allowing Elias Pettersson to continue playing on the wing. According to Conroy, the Canucks were the team that stepped up and met their asking price for Lindholm among several other interested teams.

Overall, it’s apparent that the Canucks are not hesitating to make moves to improve their team for a playoff run, and with Rutherford at the helm, they are likely to continue being aggressive before the trade deadline.