Bure goes to Miami

Archived from 1998-99 season.

NHL teams

Florida Panthers

Panthers schedule

Panthers transactions

Panthers roster


Canucks schedule

Canucks transactions

Canucks roster

The Vancouver Canucks finally managed to trade hold-out right wing Pavel Bure in a seven-player deal with the Florida Panthers.

The Canucks send Bure and defensemen Bret Hedican and Brad Ference to the Panthers for defenseman Ed Jovanovski, center Dave Gagner, goaltender Kevin Weekes and left wing Mike Brown, the 20th overall selection in the 1997 draft.

"He can lift people out of their seats with his speed and flash," Panthers general manager Bryan Murray said. "We're also confident he'll lift the play of some of our younger players."

The 27-year old Bure is one of the stars of the NHL. He has scored 50+ goals three times and is considered one of the most skilled players in the league.

Bure has missed the entire season after announcing last August that he would never play again for the Canucks. The team suspended him without pay, Bure is in the final year of a five-year deal that would reportedly pay him about $8 million.

He has been practicing in Moscow with his old Red Army team, saying in a recent interview that he said he reached his decision after the team reneged on earlier promises to trade him.

"There's nothing like shooting the puck on goal," Panthers coach Terry Murray said. "He has the opportunity to be a threat every time he's on the ice. I hope he'll also have an effect on some of our other players."

This deal seems very good for Florida. In addition to Bure they get Bret Hedican, who is a very good defenseman, and Brad Ference, who is a one of the top defensive prospects in the NHL.

Bure's firepower will tremendously improve the Panther's offense. Combined with players like Viktor Kozlov and Rob Niedermayer, Bure will make the Panthers a higher-scoring team.

For the Canucks the trade is not so clear. They do get Ed Jovanovski, obviously hoping he will regain the form of the year when Florida reached the Stanley Cup finals. With Mattias Ohlund they now have a tough pair of defenseman. Dave Gagner is a veteran center, who should score 30 goals any given season and can hopefully bring the Canucks' offense back to life.

In short-term it would look like Florida has the better of this trade, but you shouldn't forget that the Canucks' GM Brian Burke was under great pressure to get the deal done and Bure's public refusal to ever play in Vancouver again lowered Burke's negotiating position deeply.

"We've beaten this thing to death," Burke said. "This has involved shopping trips to try and jack the value up. Trading a player like this is not easy. ... If I thought I could've received a better deal, I would've waited."

Contact The HockeyNut - Front Page - Archive

Copyright©1999 The HockeyNut