Canucks and Beyond

Gillis for Gilroy

04/15/2009 at 3:36pm EDT

From Jason Botchford at The Province:

Think Fabian Brunnstrom, but bigger.

This year the name of the young, relatively unknown free agent who has NHL general managers buzzing is Matt Gilroy, the winner of the Hobey Baker Award, given to the top college player in the U.S.

The 200-pound defenceman is considered the best college free agent available, maybe in years. Gilroy is thought to be good enough that he could step into an NHL roster right now. He will next year.

There are as many as 10 teams that have expressed interest, but the Canucks are considered frontrunners.

More from The Province, which goes on to quote Mike Gillis on the subject of trying to replace the role Luc Bourdon was meant to fill. But there’s a catch to all this: Gilroy is 25 years old and his introductory NHL contract isn’t going to be signed for small change.

The AP via the Sporting News has more on Gilroy here, mentioning among other things that he was made offers as a free agent last summer by no less than 23 NHL teams.

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