Sports

Canucks sign draft pick Jared McCann; David Booth moves on from Vancouver

The Vancouver Canucks locked up Jared McCann on Thursday, the team's 24th overall selection in June's NHL Entry Draft.

McCann was Vancouver's second pick of the first round, after the Canucks took Abbotsford kid Jake Virtanen with the sixth overall selection. The team then drafted goalie Thatcher Demko with the 36th overall pick.

Last season, McCann had 62 points in 64 games with the OHL's Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds.

"If Jared can maximize his potential he's a top-two line NHL Centre," said Kyle Dubas, his Greyhounds GM and now the assistant general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs (Canucks Army).

"A lot of him reaching his potential has to do with his physical maturation. He's a guy who is essentially NHL average height but 30 pounds below average weight. When I watch Jared play I am reminded a lot of Ryan O'Reilly and Logan Couture."

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While McCann was settling into his situation in Vancouver, David Booth was moving on from it.

Booth was bought out by the Canucks this spring, releasing him from a contract that had been paying the under-performing winger upwards of $4 million a season.

But Booth turned around and signed this week with the Toronto Maple Leafs on a one-year, $1.1-million deal.

"There's just so many things that I'm excited about," he said yesterday, in an interview with Toronto's TSN 1050 radio station (NHL.com). "Just the opportunity to, I guess, revive my career a little bit.

"It's been a little bit tougher the past couple years, with some injuries, setbacks that I've had... I've stayed positive through them all.

"I thought I was playing some good hockey there toward the end of the year... and I've had a great summer of training, been healthy, and really excited to get a start here in Toronto."

Booth ended his 2014 season on a surge, playing on Vancouver's third line with Brad Richardson and Zack Kassian, and put up six points in his final 10 games.

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