Canucks’ Media Coverage – Press Comments
March 19, 2019
Vancouver Canucks: Why they should keep Luke Schenn
Vancouver Canucks defenceman Luke Schenn has been through it all and at 29, he’s a perfect resign candidate.
Schenn hits, blocks shots, can skate well for a guy his size and can make a nice outlet pass to the forwards. He won’t command a major salary this summer, and with the need for depth and a big body on the blueline, Benning should offer Schenn a one or two-year deal this summer.
March 27, 2019
The Schenn-o-Meter hits seven
Which brings us to Luke Schenn.
He was not only spinning out of trouble early in his own zone and putting outlet passes right on the tape; he had three hits in the early part of the first period. After a 12-hit outing Sunday, he added seven more Tuesday, and the 29-year-old UFA is becoming more than a roster option.
“I didn’t know what we were getting but, man, he’s a good example,” Green said following the morning skate. “He hasn’t played every night, but when he does, he’s looking to leave a mark and leave an impression. His compete level is very high and he’s going to do whatever he can to stay in the lineup and help the team.
“He has done a good job. I didn’t even know if he’d get into the lineup. And his game has steadily improved with more games because he hasn’t played much. And it’s his attitude and what he’s trying to bring to the table. You hope guys are taking notice.”
March 29, 2019
Canucks’ Schenn setting a strong example in latest NHL opportunity
Hughes’ dazzling debut for the Canucks in Thursday’s 3-2 shootout win against the Los Angeles Kings was only slightly more surprising than the guy he played alongside.
After the rookie from the University of Michigan spectacularly beat veteran Trevor Lewis behind the Los Angeles net to create a scoring chance that ended with a debut assist on Brock Boeser’s second-period goal, Schenn ignored the celebration and instead confronted Lewis, who had knocked down Hughes at the end of the play.
Soon Schenn seemed to be confronting the entire L.A. lineup and at one point had two Kings pinned to the ice behind the net while goalie Jonathan Quick squirted water on him
March 30, 2019
Schenn to re-sign?
Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported Saturday on Hockey Night in Canada that the Canucks and defenceman Luke Schenn are talking about a contract for the 2019-20 season. He’s provided solid work on the third pairing.
March 31, 2019
Has Luke Schenn played his way onto next season’s Vancouver Canucks’ roster?
There’s no arguing that Schenn has made a massive impact, on both his teammates and the fanbase in Vancouver.
He’s been physically imposing on the ice, willing to hit every opponent in sight and seems to actually relish the chance to muck it up with anyone who comes near any of his more skilled teammates.
He has provided a security for rookie Quinn Hughes (the two have been partnered in the two games Hughes has played in the NHL thus far) and given the Canucks an edge of physicality the team has lacked for, well, a long, long time.
There’s something every fan (and teammate) can appreciate about a player willing to lay it all on the line night after night for his club. And Schenn has done just that, to the tune of 26 hits and 10 blocked shots.
So it didn’t come as a shock when The Province’s Ben Kuzma reported that Canucks general manager Jim Benning intends to bring back Schenn (who is on an expiring contract) next year.
And, you know, for fans that get to watch Schenn take no prisoners for another year. It’s pretty fun.
April 1, 2019
Canucks will explore contract extension for 'pleasant surprise' Luke Schenn
Veteran defenceman has been physical, intimidating and protective of younger players
The rejuvenated Luke Schenn is a good story.
The unrestricted free-agent defenceman is also a good bet to sign a short and reasonable contract extension with the Vancouver Canucks because he has added an intriguing element.
“That’s a fair comment and for sure it (extension) is something we’re going to look into,” Canucks general manager Jim Benning said Sunday. “We’ve been real happy with him and he’s done everything we’ve asked.
“He has been physical and excellent with our young players. We’re going to talk about this (extension) at the end of the year. He’s been a pleasant surprise for us.”
Schenn has been a steadying influence on the ice, on the bench and in the room. He has been a physical presence along the boards and in front of the net and a one-man protection agency for smaller and younger players.
For Quinn Hughes, he has been the big brother in a pleasing pairing and has allowed the roster to play without worrying about being run out of the rink. In the last four games, Schenn has 26 hits — including a dozen against the Columbus Blue Jackets on March 24 — to go with 11 shot attempts and 10 blocked shots.
When Troy Stecher was run by hulking Los Angeles Kings defenceman Kurtis MacDermid on Thursday, Schenn challenged him. And when Elias Pettersson was being plastered on the sideboards and Hughes dropped to the ice on the same night, Schenn responded.
“You just don’t want to get pushed around at any point in time,” said Schenn, who’s in his 11th NHL season and has logged 731 games with six clubs NHL clubs. “If there’s a late hit, you want to have your teammate’s back and take on that role.
“I’m viewed as an old guy, but in reality I still feel I can play and I’m 29 and not 39. I’ve been given an opportunity in Vancouver I wasn’t sure I would get. I’ll just play as well as I can, leave everything on the table and not have any regrets going into the summer.
“I just want to continue to build the trust here and see where it ends up.”
As for pairing with Hughes, the early directives soon disappeared as the kid got his game going.
“I wanted us to stay tight in the neutral zone off the rush and just work with each other,” said Schenn. “But the way he was moving and skating, I was just going to keep giving him the puck.”
Travis Green has an appreciation for Schenn’s professionalism.
“He deserves to play and our young guys can learn a lot because he understands the pressure of being a young defenceman in the league,” the Canucks coach said in reference to Schenn playing 70 games with the Toronto Maple Leafs as rookie in 2008-09 after being the fifth-overall selection in the 2008 draft.
“You can learn a lot from a guy like that by sticking up for each other and playing hard. And it’s not just that — he’s made some nice plays with the puck.”
April 1, 2019
Vancouver Canucks: Luke Schenn deserves a new contract
Luke Schenn has shined in a shutdown defenceman/enforcer role for the Vancouver Canucks, and he deserves to be rewarded for his efforts.
Schenn has thrown his weight around and has been the intimidating force on defence that the Canucks have lacked for a few years now. In 15 games with the Canucks, Schenn has 71 hits and 23 blocked shots.
And of course, nobody will forget Schenn coming into the defence of blueliner Quinn Hughes in the latter’s made his debut against the Los Angeles Kings last Thursday.
“That was awesome. It was my dream to play in the NHL, so this is surreal. I gotta give credit to Schenn, he was a huge help for me. Having #Canucks fans support me like that was special. I’m really happy to be here.” – Hughes
You take all of this into account, and it leaves Benning with an easy choice to re-sign Schenn on a cheap one or two-year deal. In fact, Benning said the team would “look into” an extension for Schenn, per Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province.
Schenn has performed well above expectations in Vancouver. He’s the physical force they need on the blue line, and Schenn is doing everything he can to ensure that Hughes’ transition to the NHL is a smooth one.
Re-signing Edler and Schenn — while Hughes continues to develop his game — could make this Vancouver blue line much more formidable next season. With that, giving Schenn a new contract should be at the top of the Canucks’ offseason to-do list.
April 4, 2019
Canucks Ready to Re-Sign Luke Schenn
Given how defensemen sometimes mature slowly, it’s not without precedent that Schenn might have found his game at 29 years of age. Canucks general manager Benning called Schenn a “pleasant surprise” and noted that the Canucks would be interested in signing the pending unrestricted free agent this off-season.
Benning noted that “We’ve been real happy with him and he’s done everything we’ve asked.” Schenn has recently been paired with Canucks’ rookie prospect, defenseman Quinn Hughes, who has credited the veteran Schenn for helping him learn to play in the NHL, especially with on-ice positioning. Benning acknowledged as much, calling Schenn an excellent leader to younger guys on the team.
April 25, 2019
Luke Schenn: Year in review
From his debut against the Ducks, Schenn played all 18 remaining games for the Vancouver Canucks. What was only supposed to be a temporary fix during an injury crisis became a story of a guy who spent every single shift making it harder and harder for Travis Green to take him out of the line up.
With 81 hits in 18 games, Schenn averaged 4.5 hits per game for the Canucks. One particularly stand-out effort was a game against the Blue Jackets where he recorded a monstrous 12 hits. Clearly willing to hit anything and everything that moved, Schenn also continued to show a willingness to make life difficult for players taking liberties in front of Jacob Markstrom, as well as giving the Canucks the kind of modest physical deterrent they’ve been lacking for a while now.
Another unexpected benefit of having Schenn in the line up came when star prospect Quinn Hughes made his debut near the end of the season. Hughes is a small guy, and avoids physical contact from larger players by using his speed and agility to “roll” off of hits. That being said, we’re talking about a rookie who has a million things he’s trying to focus on and do at the same time. The conversation around who Hughes should play with was focused on finding him someone who played a similar game as him. Quick, mobile, and able to make a good pass.
How ironic it would be for Luke Schenn to end up being the guy who fit best with him.
Having known the Hughes family from years ago, Schenn was able to play the role of the tough big brother. Not only was he able to provide much needed physical protection and safety for Hughes, but the speedy rookie was able to return the favour by compensating for Schenn’s below average speed, passing, and ability to exit his own zone with the puck.
While obviously receiving sheltered minutes against low quality competition, Luke Schenn has vastly outperformed expectations in his short time here. While not a typical example of a modern day NHL defenceman, he seems to be highly motivated to find a way to stay in the league, and his play has demonstrated that he has learned how to play within his abilities. He will never be a game breaker, but he doesn’t have to be. He just has to contribute in a positive, meaningful way, without hurting the team. I think that he’s shown that he can do that. An unrestricted free agent this summer, general manager Jim Benning has already expressed an interest in re-signing Schenn, and I think that would be a great move.
May 6, 2019
Schenn a hit in Vancouver
The Vancouver Canucks had no idea Luke Schenn would be a key player for them when they acquired him, and neither did fans. Both the team and it’s fans are thrilled with the performances Schenn turned in.
Fans began to take notice of Schenn’s play. His physicality and his willingness to stick up for his teammates — especially his willingness to spill blood if an opposing player even breathed on Pettersson — made fans quickly realize that Schenn was everything we had hoped Gudbranson could be, for a fraction of the cost.
The hashtag #DrunkOnSchenn was already quickly becoming a regularity on Canucks Twitter, but the game where everyone took notice of Schenn’s play was on March 24th against the Columbus Blue Jackets. In that game, Schenn rewrote the Canucks history books by recording 12 hits — the most by any Canuck in a single game.
Everyone, and I mean everyone, took notice of Schenn, especially after that game. With more and more reporters beginning to want to get a word in with him on where this stellar play was coming from, Schenn said:
“I’m very grateful and thankful for the opportunity. I didn’t know if it was going to come. I was working towards it all year, went down to the minors hoping to improve on some things. … It’s been so far a good fit and I’m just trying to play hard and compete until the end. We’ll see what happens.”
That quote perfectly reflects the way that Schenn played for the Canucks this season. According to general manager Jim Benning, Schenn was exactly what his team needed last year.
“He’s a good person, he’s got a lot of experience playing in the league and he filled a need for us,” Benning said. “He’s a physical, stay at home defenceman but he moved the puck fast. I thought he played well for us.”
As a result, the Canucks weren’t shy about voicing their interest in bringing Schenn back next year, and why wouldn’t they? He is exactly the kind of person you want on your team, ready to stick up for your young players. Speaking of sticking up for your young players, have you heard the story of why there was a scrum after Quinn Hughes picked up his first career assist off of a Brock Boeser goal?
You’ve already seen the goal, but just for a reminder, watch that video. There’s a lot to unpack here, and I’ll explain why Schenn plays such a quiet yet huge part in this, even though you can hardly see him at all in the clip.
So Hughes slams on the brakes and banks the puck to himself off the back of the Kings’ net, and shakes off ten year NHL veteran, Trevor Lewis. Hughes walks back out and let’s go of a shot, and Lewis finishes a hard check on Hughes that knocks him to the ice, while Boeser buries the rebound from Hughes’ original shot.
Did you catch why Schenn would be important in this story? If you guessed, “Lewis finishes a hard check on Hughes that knocks him to the ice,” you’re correct! While Pettersson, Boeser, and Hughes celebrate with one another, Schenn goes to retrieve the memorable puck for Hughes to keep, but not before he has a word with Lewis — and the other four Kings players on the ice.
He knew he would be outnumbered, and he knew the guys he was on the ice with weren’t exactly the toughest that the Canucks roster had to offer, but that’s the point; Schenn makes sure that everyone, not just Lewis, knows that it’s not okay to take liberties on the Canucks’ young guns.
That’s exactly what we want as fans, for our young, exciting players to be protected and for opposing teams to know that it’s not open season on the Canucks rookies. Schenn absolutely has a role on this team, and if he is re-signed, then there will be some healthy competition for roster spots come October.
It was a healthy combination of solid defence, finishing every check, sticking up for his teammates, and not once appearing to take a shift for granted that turned Schenn from a minor trade pickup into a fan favourite amongst Canucks fans — in just 18 games.