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Highly touted prospect Quinn Hughes bolts from U.S. college ranks to join the Canucks

Last Updated Mar 11, 2019 at 6:39 am PDT

NHL Draft prospect Quinn Hughes of the University of Michigan. (Photo from the University of Michigan)
Summary

The Vancouver Canucks are getting some help on the back end with the addition of top prospect Quinn Hughes

Highly touted prospect Quinn Hughes is bolting from the U.S. college ranks to join the Vancouver Canucks

Questions remain on whether Quinn Hughes will slip seamlessly into the NHL or struggle, as he is signed by the Canucks

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The Vancouver Canucks are getting some help on the back end.

Defenceman Quinn Hughes — a highly regarded prospect out of the University of Michigan — is bolting from the U.S. college ranks to jump to the NHL.

Sportsnet 650‘s James Cybulski says the addition means some help for the Canucks on the back end.

“If you’ve looked at Vancouver’s defensive core for the better part of the last three years, there’s a glaring need for help on that back end and this is a young man who checks the boxes on a lot of levels of what he can offer. First off and foremost, his skating ability changes the game on the back end immediately.”

While excitement builds, and it remains to be seen whether the 19-year-old will suit up for the Canucks on Wednesday, Cybulski admits Hughes isn’t the biggest guy. However, he also points out that doesn’t really matter anymore.

“I mean there were concerns about Elias Pettersson breaking into the National Hockey League based on weighing about 165 lbs and no, Quinn Hughes is not a big guy. There could be an adjustment, and there is a concern about his size, but it’s what he can do with his skating abilities and his play-making abilities and it’s a new NHL where you don’t necessarily have to be 6’5″ and 230 lbs anymore.”

With some questions remaining as to whether Hughes will slip seamlessly into the NHL like Brock Boeser or struggle like Adam Gaudette, Cybulski notes the rookie has had an extra year to develop at the college level.

“Let’s see if that translates at all in the NHL. But the Canucks desperately need a win, whether it’s him setting the world on fire right out of the gate or just showing that he can at least play the way the things have gone the last month.”

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