2021 is coming to an end….good fucking riddance.
Don’t let the run of good games at the end of this year fool you, the Canucks were a bad, bad team this year. Since January the Canucks have gone 38-44-7 and have a -49 goal differential. The leading scorer for the Canucks during this time has been J.T. Miller with 81 points in 86 games. I think the debate over his contract and 1st round value should be done.
Here are my 3 good things to occur over the past year with the Canucks.
1. Thatcher Demko is pretty good. A lot has been said about “Bubble Demko”, but his true value has come over the past year, playing very well with a crappy defensive system in front of him. I think Bruce knows this and has more confidence letting his team take more chances because Demko can make the big save.
2. The young players can play. Podkolzin and Hoglander will definitely get all the opportunities to play under Boudreau. He wants to see if they have not only the skill, but the drive to be better. So far, both have shown they deserve to get more minutes in different situations.
3. The house was cleaned. Changing a GM or coach alone was not enough to change the mentality of the players. Getting rid of a lot of the braintrust, is the closest you can get to a clean slate.
Here are the 3 bad things to occur over the year.
1. Pettersson’s injury. The one constant about GMJB and TG was their lack of clarity when it came to injuries. I understand you don’t want to advertise to other teams as to what is wrong with players, but it would make it easier to understand what the hell happened to Petey. He was not ready to play this season. His shot, his skating are all things that are not there. That 3 year contract GMJB singed him to might be a good thing if he can’t get things going this year.
2. The cupboard is getting bare. For all the writing about GMJB’s prowess as a drafter…he didn’t do much of that and while he did make some great picks….he just didn’t have enough picks to keep the minors stocked for the future. Not much changed this year and Jim Rutherford will have to start correcting that…probably through trades.
3. The bottom 6 is still below average. You can stick Petey down there….or any other player from the top 6, but it doesn’t change the fact that you need a shutdown line to win. The Canucks don’t have that. And maybe they won’t under Bruce….but they should.
2022 should be one hell of a ride for the Canucks…and the league for that matter, with COVID. Jim Rutherford seems to have been given a green light by Francesco to make the changes he sees fit to try and get this team on the right path. And if I was a betting man, I would say one of Brock or Petey will get traded before the start of next season.
All of us at Nucks Misconduct want to thank you for spending 2021 with us and look forward to arguing with us in the new year!