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REPORT: Two teams appear most likely to land ex-Canuck Jake Virtanen

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Jake Virtanen may find himself back in an NHL lineup soon enough.

The 26-year-old forward, who was selected sixth-overall by the Canucks in 2014, hasn't played for a North American club since the 2020-21 season. However, he appears poised to return ahead of next season.

Bob Stauffer, Oilers TV and radio commentator and host of Oilers Now, reported on Tuesday that Virtanen has received interest from both the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers on a professional try-out deal (PTO). Stauffer also noted that the Washington Capitals were a potential suitor.

"It'll be something to watch for. I don't know if it's going to be Edmonton — it could be Calgary — but (Virtanen)'s representative is (agent) Kevin Epp, and I do believe there's a possibility it could be one of the two Alberta teams," said Stauffer.

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Virtanen was accused of Sexual Assault while playing for the Canucks back in May, 2021. The club then placed him on indefinite leave and ultimately bought out his contract just a month later.

A 12-person jury found Jake not guilty of sexual assault in the case this past July, clearing his path to return to the NHL. There is a civil lawsuit still pending against him, although no trial date has been set as of yet.

Jake Virtanen spent last season playing for HC Spartak Moscow in the KHL, due to his criminal case. He appeared in 36 games, scoring nine goals and 16 points in Russia.

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In six seasons with the Vancouver Canucks, Virtanen scored 55 goals and had 100 total points in 317 games played.

During his only playoff appearance back in the bubble, the Winger had 2 goals and 3 points in 16 games.



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