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Canucks Are Younger, But How Much Younger?

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Bo knows......
Bo knows......
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

General Manager Jim Benning told the Sun recently:

"We have six new players from last year — that’s a third of the team. I think we did the things we set out to accomplish. If we go into the season with this group, I’m happy. I think we’ve gotten younger, I think we’re more enthusiastic and have more energy, we’ve got a deeper roster and when Ryan Miller is on his game he’s one of the top six goalies in the league."


OK, so how much younger are the Canucks compared to last season? Well...that kind of ties into the early part of his quote. "If we go into the season with this group, I'm happy."

What is the group he is referring to? Let's look at the depth chart:

FORWARDS

Sedin - Sedin - Vrbata

Burrows - Bonino - Kassian

Higgins - Matthias - Hansen

Dorsett - Richardson - Vey

(Sestito)

DEFENCE

Bieksa - Hamhuis

Edler - Tanev

Stanton - Weber

(Sbisa....)

GOAL

Miller

Lack

Looks good, right? Well what about the kids like Jensen, Horvat, Gaunce, Shinkaruk and company? Benning said this:

"If these guys come in and show they deserve to be on the team, then I’ll move somebody to make room for them. But it’s going to be earned, not given. Coming from the organizations I worked for previously (Boston Bruins and Buffalo Sabres), we let players develop properly in the minor leagues. I don’t want to rush our players on development. I’m glad we have good, young players. But they have to earn their spot on the teams, and when they do we’ll make room for them."


And that really is the bottom line. He's not bullshitting. Those kids have to blow the coaching staffs' minds or they return to wherever they came from. Horvat spends another year in the OHL? So be it. I don't give a crap about his creds in the OHL. He needs to force management's hand. I pick on Horvat because he was the top 10 draft pick we got in exchange for Cory Schneider. Many hail him to make the team but I seriously doubt it, or, at least, barring injury, hes not making the cut.
Every year we hail all these kids to make the big squad but it's unrealistic. The only way they do is in an injury crisis.
That does leave me wondering where in the hell Sestito for example fits in as the 13th forward. I'll take a stab at waivers at this point.

So look at my listed roster as the starting roster, barring injury.

Does Nick Bonino replace Ryan Kesler? No. But that gaping hole can be filled by more than one guy.

Having said all that, here is the Canucks' YoungStars Tournament in Penticton later this month. But if you stroke a certain prospect.......
May the force be with you.

Food for thought...
My current average aged roster: 22 man roster for 2013-14: 28.18
The likely 23 man roster for 2014-15  28.48.

Just sayin'.