2008/09 NHL Northwest Divison Standings Preview
2008/09 Vancouver Canucks Season Preview
5. Vancouver Canucks – The Canucks lineup isn’t terrible when healthy. The problem is they never are. The forwards are decent, but not good enough for a contending team. The Sedin twins showed last year that they are becoming first line talent. The additions of Pavol Demitra and Steve Bernier will help with scoring, but the help stops after that. Taylor Pyatt topped out with 23 goals two years ago and has yet to reach 40 points in a season. Ryan Kesler is a great skater but is more of a 3rd line checker and Kyle Wellwood has gotten in better shape but in the tough Western Conference will get lost in the shuffle.
The defence is actually pretty solid, better than Colorado’s. However, the main problem is they can’t stay healthy. Kevin Bieksa, Willie Mitchell and Nolan Baumgartner are dependable in the defensive end, but Mitchell has injury issues and Bieksa might as well just because of the type of game he plays. Alexander Edler, Sami Salo and Mattias Ohlund add offence from the point but both Salo and Ohlund have a history of injury problems.
Goaltending is very solid with Roberto Luongo, the best goaltender in the league, and Curtis Sanford, a very reliable backup. Although they have great goaltending from Luongo, their blueline has a lot of injury issues and their forwards are far from playoff worthy.