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Who's Interested in Vancouver Canucks Captain Bo Horvat?

Bo Horvat is one of the top goal-scorers in the NHL right now. If the Vancouver Canucks can't re-sign him, where could he go?
Bo Horvat

Earlier this month, Vancouver Canucks president of hockey operations Jim Rutherford hinted at roster changes if his struggling club failed to improve. With the Canucks still mired near the bottom of the Western Conference standings, Bo Horvat has become the topic of media trade conjecture.

Horvat, 27, is slated to become an unrestricted free agent next summer. Despite his club's early-season difficulties, he's off to a blazing start with a team-leading 14 goals in 18 games, good for second place in the NHL. However, Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman recently reported there's nothing new regarding his contract extension talks.

Vancouver has a projected cap space of $0 this season, according to Cap Friendly. The 27-year-old will likely want a raise during his prime years in the NHL. 

Friedman also pondered potential trade destinations for the Canucks captain. On a recent “32 Thoughts” podcast, he suggested the Washington Capitals as a destination, pointing out that long-time center Nicklas Backstrom might not return from off-season hip surgery. The Capitals roster has been decimated by injuries, and they're struggling to score.

The Columbus Blue Jackets are another possibility. Friedman said he's heard some rumors linking them to Horvat, adding that they could really use a center.

Given Horvat's fast start, two-way play and affordable $5.5-million cap hit for this season, he's going to attract plenty of interest if the Canucks put him on the block. However, that move might not happen until closer to the March 3 trade deadline. 

Ryan Kennedy and Mike Stephens discussed Horvat's solid start to the 2022-23 season and analyzed what his next contract could look like in the Nov. 15 edition of The Hockey News Podcast.

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