1. At this particular moment I will say that the Canucks will not make the playoffs. The 9 game losing streak near the start of the year was a deep hole to dig out of. Add in the 4 game losing streak in January and another 4 game streak in February, it does not give me any hope for March. Especially since the Canucks have a 5 game road trip in the middle of March against conference teams. They haven’t done well in those situations. The injuries now to Horvat and Sutter really screw up the middle lines and it showed against Pittsburgh. .500 hockey is not enough to get in anymore.
2. I would trade Chris Tanev before March 1st. I have said this all year. He is the only tradable piece with no NMC. (kicks in next year). There are many teams that need a top 4 right handed d-man who excels at shot suppression. The Canucks need one as well, but the need for draft picks and Tanev’s injury history always leads me back to getting rid of him.
3. On Reddit there was a game of Sven/Hansen/Granlund, and who could be traded, drafted at the expansion draft or which two would be protected from the draft. You could protect all three of them from the draft, but would mean leaving all of your defensemen open. So kiss Edler bye-bye. (I have no problem with that either) If a defenseman does get protected then I would leave Hansen un-protected.
4. Do we see Jake back at all this year? He has finally lost the extra weight he thought he needed and his conditioning is getting better. I’m sure that Willie and Benning want to see more scoring from him as well. I like the fact that Jake is down there playing more 1st and 2nd line minutes so he can keep a goal scorers mentality. That is definitely something that Gaunce lost this year playing 4th line minutes. I don’t want Jake playing 4th line minutes on the Canucks. I think Rodin will be a goner next year and Jake can slide into the top 3 lines.
5. The quick hiring of Julien by the Canadiens shows that there might be more of a chance Willie survives one more year. I know people will ask for Travis Green to take over, but I think the Canucks will seriously consider signing Willie to another 2 year contract.