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Sami Salo to miss 'at least' five months, LTIR might solve Vancouver's salary cap woes

Sep 16, 2010, 1:30 PM EDT

Thumbnail image for samisalouch.jpgWith the Vancouver Canucks adding a substantial amount of cash to their already jam-packed blueline in the form of Keith Ballard and Dan Hamhuis this off-season, the question seemed to be: who needs to go?

That problem might solve itself thanks to a very … mysterious off-season injury. The Canucks are about $3.15 million above the salary cap with 23 players committed (according to CapGeek.com), but reports indicate that Sami Salo and his $3.5 million cap hit could very well be eligible for the long term injury reserve.

News 1130 Sports reports that Salo will be out “at least” five months according to GM Mike Gillis, so if the team will need to move someone, it won’t need to do so anytime soon.

Taking Salo’s $3.5 million off the Canucks cap would put the team under by about $350K, not quite enough for a minimum wage player. Then again, Gillis can move some salary around at the team’s lower levels or just settle for a 22-man roster instead of the 23 player maximum.

Either way, it’s a lot easier than trying to find a home for useful but injury prone defenseman Kevin Bieksa, the target of more than a few trade rumors this summer. Time will tell if Vancouver deserves all of their Stanley Cup hype, but Salo’s loss might just be the Canucks’ gain.

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