VANCOUVER – The Vancouver Canucks added some much-needed depth at forward by acquiring centre Derek Roy, who was sent packing for the second time in 12 months.
“Everything happens for a reason and I’m excited to be a Canuck,” Roy said on a conference call from Dallas after the Stars shipped him to Vancouver on Tuesday. He planned to fly to Vancouver Tuesday night and report for practice Wednesday.
In exchange, the Stars got defenceman Kevin Connauton and a second-round pick.
“I like the fact he’s been a winner, and an MVP at the Memorial Cup,” said Canucks general manager Mike Gillis. “I like his points per game average, I like his play-making aspect and the opportunity to add another layer of offence was important.”
The Stars picked up Roy last July, in a deal with the Buffalo Sabres for Steve Ott and Adam Pardy. Prior to that he had been in the Sabres organization since being drafted by Buffalo in 2001.
His best season came in 2007-08, when he had 32 goals and 49 assists in 78 games. The Ottawa native will become an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season and couldn’t agree on terms with Dallas.
“It’s obviously tough to be traded,” he said of two moves in less than a year. Roy said he wasn’t he wasn’t consulted about this one.
“I had no say. We were trying to renegotiate a contract and things weren’t going really well. I got a call from (general manager) Joe Nieuwendyk this morning saying I had been traded to Vancouver.”
Vancouver is in need of secondary scoring as its second line has been hit hard by injuries. Mason Raymond recently joined Ryan Kesler and David Booth on the injured list with a sore shoulder. Centre Manny Malhotra was also removed from the Canucks lineup with continuing eye problems.
“The injury to Manny (Malhotra) we’ve had to look at different opportunities and possibilities,” said Gillis. “This is a year not like other years, so we had a chance to do that deal this morning, so we acted on it so we could fill that hole we had.”
Roy had four goals and 18 assists in 30 games with Dallas this year but said he too had injury problems that hampered his game until recently.
“I’m healthy now. At the start of the year I had couple of little minor injuries and that set me back a bit but I’ve been skating really well,” he said.
“I’m excited to join the team and excited to make a good playoff push.”