The Vancouver Canucks have officially kicked off the off-season.
The Canucks got the ball rolling on what should be a busy summer on Friday afternoon, agreeing to terms with three players on contract extensions for next season.
In checking off a few boxes on their to-do list before the draft next weekend, the Canucks signed defenseman Jack Rathbone to a one-way contract while locking in defenseman Noah Juulsen and forward William Lockwood to two-way contracts.
The term and financial details of the deals have yet to be released.
Rathbone had a particularly strong season in the AHL in 2021-22, racking up 10 goals and 30 assists for 40 points in just 39 games with the Abbotsford Canucks. The 23-year-old led all of his team's defenders in goals, assists, and points, and has scored at over a point-per-game pace throughout his entire 47-game tenure in the AHL.
In 17 games of NHL experience, Rathbone has also managed one goal and two assists for three points, with this new deal perhaps opening the door for him to earn additional playing time.
Juulsen spent a brief stint with the Canucks at the NHL level last season, appearing in eight games with the big club after being acquired from the Montreal Canadiens. The 25-year-old has 56 games of big-league experience under his belt between both organizations, having earned 10 points and 10 penalty minutes.
Suiting up in 46 games for the Abbotsford Canucks this past season, Lockwood collected nine goals and 16 assists for 25 points. He also logged 13 games at the NHL level in 2021-22, going pointless while registering 13 shots and nine penalty minutes.
With these signings, the Canucks have begun to lock in their organizational depth ahead of what should be a hectic free agency period in the coming weeks.