News / Vancouver

Dan Hamhuis has not been approached to waive no-trade clause, calls possibility of playing for Stanley Cup ‘enticing’

TSN report on Thursday states the Chicago Blackhawks have 'serious interest' in Hamhuis and Radim Vrbata

Vancouver Canucks defenceman Dan Hamhuis looks to make a pass during an NHL game against the L.A. Kings.

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Vancouver Canucks defenceman Dan Hamhuis looks to make a pass during an NHL game against the L.A. Kings.

Dan Hamhuis admits he isn’t used to this much trade speculation, which is ramping up following Thursday’s report from TSN’s Farhan Lalji that the Chicago Blackhawks have serious interest in the Vancouver Canucks defenceman.

The Blackhawks were also reported to have interest in Canucks forward Radim Vrbata, who is currently out with a lower-body injury and hasn’t skated with the team since getting hurt in Sunday’s win over Colorado.

The Canucks have fallen well back in the playoff race and appear destined to be sellers by Monday’s trade deadline.

The 33-year-old Hamhuis, a pending unrestricted free agent, told reporters following Thursday’s morning skate that management has not yet approached him about waiving his no-trade clause.

“I think it’s a conversation that I’ve needed to have with my family just in preparation there is changes,” he said prior to Thursday’s tilt versus the Ottawa Senators at Rogers Arena.

“We have kids and if something were to change than we’d want to be prepared for that.”

Family and stability were the reasons Hamhuis wanted a no-trade clause in his contract when he signed with the Canucks – and reportedly turned down more money from other teams interested in him – in the July of 2010.

“Because I have a family and six years in a city, you certainly establish roots and the family’s got a lot of roots and friendships here, so you want to be able to protect that as best you can,” he said.

If the Blackhawks do have such a keen interest, a possible deal with Chicago would provide Hamhuis with at least an opportunity for a potentially long playoff run, perhaps even a berth in the Stanley Cup Final.

In the last six years, the Blackhawks have hoisted the silver chalice three times. They’re one point back of Dallas for top spot in the Western Conference.

For the Blackhawks, a possible acquisition of Hamhuis would provide them with a reliable left-shooting defenceman whose play since returning to Vancouver’s lineup from a horrific injury in December has been good considering the current state of the Canucks' blue line.

While Vrbata, another pending unrestricted free agent with a modified no-trade clause, has struggled for various reasons throughout this season to produce, he could, in an ideal world, provide a contending team gearing up for a playoff run via the rental market with additional scoring depth.

He had 31 goals and 63 points (12 goals and 23 points on the power play) a season ago as a summer free agent signing with the Canucks.

Vrbata didn’t take the morning skate. On Tuesday, Canucks’ coach Willie Desjardins guessed his 34-year-old right winger could be out for a week.

Hamhuis addressed the idea of a potential ‘right situation’ with another club.

“That’s maybe step two or three in a process that would involve moving. We haven’t even gone to step one yet. The Canucks haven’t approached on any of that stuff,” said Hamhuis.

“Let’s say it does come to that, we’d certainly be taking a close look at, you know, if we’re asked to move, where a good fit would be.”

Hamhuis seemed open to the idea of perhaps being moved if it meant he could re-sign back with the Canucks in the summer.  

“That’s one of so many options. We certainly love being in this city, love playing in this building and this franchise,” he said.

“Certainly would love to entertain the idea of playing here longer.

“You always want to be playing competitive hockey in the playoffs and the spring and I think my actions (are) evidence of that over the years, playing in world championships as many times as I could and I love the opportunity to try to win. We had such a close call there in 2011, being close, and that’s certainly enticing.”

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