USATSI_9195706_154158418_lowresThe Vancouver Canucks may have closed the window on their post-season chances, but they’re ready to look ahead with the arrival of Nikita Tryamkin.

The 21-year-old has seen action in two games this season and he has an assist to his name.

The Canucks signed him to an entry level contract last week and have since been giving the Russian a serious look on the blueline. He debuted against the Colorado Avalanche and picked up his first NHL point in the 3-1 loss, then he saw time against the Edmonton Oilers on Friday night in a 2-0 loss.

Tryamkin was actually under contract in the KHL when the Canucks snagged him for duty. He was skating for the Yekaterinburg Automobilist and put up 11 points in 53 games this season. The club allowed Vancouver to work out the entry level deal, but they will retain his KHL rights for the time being.

Tryamkin has four years of experience in the KHL under his belt, plus he put in time with the MHL’s JHC Avto junior team.

The Canucks selected him 66th overall in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft and now look primed to give him a proper tryout at the professional level.

Tryamkin is a hard player to miss at 6’8 and 230 or so pounds, plus he can play a hard-nosed game. Sometimes he finds himself on the edge, which can add up to more than a few minutes spent in the penalty box. He has a solid stick and a great reach, though, which is why he’s able to break up odd-man rushes without dropping out of position.

But for the most part, this is a top-tier development project for a team in desperate need of some good news.

The Canucks have been hobbled by a rebuild as of late and fans are getting impatient. Putting Tryamkin in the mix is a great way to generate some interest in next season. He brings a physicality the team hasn’t seen on the blueline since Willie Mitchell and that’s a good thing.

While Tryamkin likely won’t be an overnight success in this tough hockey market, his arrival spells good things for Vancouver and he’ll have the ability to make a difference on the ice. In a season that was mostly disastrous, it’s nice to end things on a good note.

Advertisements