NHL: The Canucks, a “perfect match” for Vincent Desharnais

NHL: The Canucks, a “perfect match” for Vincent Desharnais
NHL: The Canucks, a “perfect match” for Vincent Desharnais

Vincent Desharnais did not hesitate to describe his new association with the Vancouver Canucks as a “perfect match” on Wednesday when he met the media during a video conference.

On Monday, Desharnais signed a two-year deal with the Canucks worth $4 million after playing in the Stanley Cup Final with the Edmonton Oilers last month.

The giant-sized defender received a few offers, but the Canucks’ one convinced him in less than an hour.

“It was stressful, I’m not going to lie. It was new to me. I didn’t know where I was going to end up. My agent did a good job of pushing me in the right direction,” Desharnais explained.

Desharnais now moves to a direct rival of the Oilers, who also eliminated the Canucks in the second round of the playoffs.

“There were some great battles against them this year. It’s going to be nice to be on their side and not get hit every time I touch the puck,” said the 28-year-old rearguard.

“They’re not a fun team to play against. They’re always in your face, they’re very aggressive and they never give up. They’re a very well-structured team. The organization has done a great job of putting together a good core of players.”

There were several reasons for Desharnais’ choice. He mentioned the Vancouver fans, the quality of the coaching staff, but most importantly, the quality of the Canucks’ roster, which should be very competitive for many years to come.

“I want to win. I was so close this year. I wanted to have another chance. The Canucks are going to be good for at least 4 or 5 years.”

Drafted 183rd overall in the 2016 draft by the Oilers, Desharnais had an atypical journey to reach the NHL in 2022-23, before earning a full-time position this past season. Positive and optimistic by nature, the Laval defenseman is very grateful for the opportunities that now come his way.

“If you look at the odds, I shouldn’t be here. Every day in the best league in the world is a good day. In the past, I’ve had tough times and adversity. When I go to bed at night, I remind myself that I’m playing in the best league against the best players.”

With the departures of defensive specialists Nikita Zadorov to Boston and Ian Cole to Utah, Desharnais will become one of Rick Tocchet’s trusted men on defense, especially on the penalty kill.

“I don’t take a day for granted in this league because it’s so hard to get there and so hard to stay there. Things can change very quickly. I live in the moment and I don’t look too far into the future,” Desharnais explains.



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