Vancouver Canucks general manager Jim Benning called defenceman Luke Schenn a "pleasant surprise" on Sunday and said team is interested in retaining the pending unrestricted free agent this off-season.

“That’s a fair comment and for sure it [an extension] is something we’re going to look into,” Benning told the Vancouver Province. “We’ve been real happy with him and he’s done everything we’ve asked.

“He has been physical and excellent with our young players. We’re going to talk about this at the end of the year. He’s been a pleasant surprise for us.”

The Canucks acquired the 29-year-old defenceman in January from the Anaheim Ducks, sending Micheal Del Zotto back the other way. Schenn had spent the majority of the season with AHL's San Diego Gulls at the time of his trade and started his time with the Canucks playing with the AHL's Utica Comets.

After seven games in Utica, Schenn was called up by the Canucks and has posted two assists in 15 games since.

“He deserves to play and our young guys can learn a lot because he understands the pressure of being a young defenceman in the league,” Canucks head coach Travis Green said of Schenn.

“You can learn a lot from a guy like that by sticking up for each other and playing hard. And it’s not just that – he’s made some nice plays with the puck.”

A veteran of 731 career games, Schenn has played for five NHL teams since the 2015-16 season.