Vanek netted his third goal of the season in Thursday's loss to the Bruins. Vanek has now scored twice in his last two games, piling up seven shots on goal in that span. His tally Thursday came with the man advantage, where he lined up on the second unit alongside Sam Gagner and Michael Del Zotto. The sniper has a history of being a Bruins killer, having piled on 67 points in 62 games against them over his career. Vanek is still a capable goal scorer, so if he continues to skate alongside Bo Horvat or the Sedin Twins, he remains a serviceable fantasy option.
Vanek scored his first goal with the Canucks in Tuesday's loss to Ottawa. It was a great point shot from Vanek, who skated on the first line with the Sedin twins. The former Sabre also screened netminder Craig Anderson on the opening goal and picked up two PIM. Vanek is no longer the 40-goal-scorer he once was, but the 33-year-old still possesses a lethal shot and should thrive if he sticks with the twins this year.
Vanek skated with the Sedin twins at practice Saturday, according to Steve Ewen of the Vancouver Province. Vanek is expected to skate with the twins at even strength and on the power play in Saturday's game against the Oilers. While the Swedish brothers are on the decline, they still remain elite playmakers who could be great for Vanek's fantasy value. The 33-year-old sniper netted 17 goals last season and should post some solid numbers on a Vancouver team that hasn't had many pure goal scorers on the roster in recent years.
Vanek inked a one-year, $2 million contract with the Canucks on Friday. Vanek was a strong contributor for two different teams in 2016-17, racking up 38 points (15 goals, 23 assists) in 48 games with Detroit before adding 10 points (two goals, eight assists) in 20 games with the Panthers. The 33-year-old winger won't be surrounded with as much talent in Vancouver, but he could once again surpass the 45-point threshold in 2017-18, making him a solid depth option in most fantasy formats.
Vanek returning to the Red Wings remains in a "possibility range," according to his agent Steve Barlett, the Detroit Free Press reports. The Wings are mired in a salary-cap mess. Per CapFriendly, the Original Six franchise has a cap deficit of $3.021 million, and GM Ken Holland is under heavy pressure to re-sign burgeoning winger Andreas Athanasiou. Still, Vanek was one of the few bright spots in Motown last season, as the enigmatic veteran turned back the clock for 15 goals and 23 assists in 48 games preceding his trade to the Panthers in March. As noted in this latest report, it's permissible for the Wings to reacquire Vanek and still exceed the cap limit in training camp, but they'd have to swing a trade and/or place several of their injured players on long-term IR to free up cap space against the upper limit once the regular season rolls around. For what it's worth, the Canucks have also shown tentative interest in the Austrian.
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