26-Year-Old Defenseman – Vancouver Canucks
Chris Tanev Contract Information:
Signed a five-year, $22.25 million contract extension with the Canucks in March of 2015.
Tanev (back) will return to the lineup Thursday night against the Sharks.
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RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
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Tanev was one of the lone bright spots for the Canucks in 2013-2014, posting a career-high six goals and 17 points in 62 games. He was arguably the most consistent Canuck throughout the season, recording a plus-12 rating, while averaging a career-high 20:44 of ice time. And at only 24 years of age, his best is yet to come -- he is on the rise. While he hasnít been used on the power play, Tanev has become a fixture on the Canucksí penalty kill, averaging 3:00 of shorthanded ice time per game last season. Tanev also delivered for fantasy owners with two game-winning goals and a shorthanded tally, proving his clutch ability. While itís hard to see Tanev turning into an elite offensive defenseman, he is well on his way to becoming a solid op-four blueliner in the NHL. And with the departure of Jason Garrison to Tampa Bay, Tanevís role will only expand this upcoming season.
After bouncing back and forth between the NHL and AHL the previous two seasons, Tanev finally saw a full season of action with the Canucks in 2012-13. The 23-year-old blueliner finished with seven points (two goals, five assists) in 38 games while averaging over 17 minutes of ice time as the Canucks fifth defenseman. His offensive game hasnít developed much the past couple seasons, but Tanev remains a very disciplined player on defense and he should be able to rack up higher point totals once heís handed a bigger role. The Canucks and Tanev remined mired in contract discussions in early August, but as a restricted free agent, the odds are he returns to Vancouver for another go-round. The leg injury that hampered Tanev late in the season isnít expected to be an issue once camp opens.
Tanev split the 2011-12 season between Chicago of the AHL and Vancouver. In his 25 appearances for the Canucks, Tanev finished with two points (0 G, 2 A) and a plus-10 rating while skating nearly 17 minutes per-game. Despite the lack of point production, Tanev grades out as a solid defensive option, as he always seems to make the right play. The 23-year old might never develop into one of the top defensive scorers in the league but Vancouver has a solid young blueliner for years to come with Tanev.
Tanev made his NHL debut during the 2010-11 season, having appeared in 29 regular season games and five games during the postseason. While Tanev managed just one assist over in his first 34 games at the NHL level, he played mistake-free hockey that left a lasting impression on the Canucks' brass. He might be a few years from fulfilling his potential, but this 21-year-old has a bright future in the NHL.