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Quinn’s Questions: Who is Vancouver’s Number Four Defenceman?

Hughes, OEL, and Myers make up the top three, but who is fourth on Vancouver’s depth chart?

Vancouver Canucks v Edmonton Oilers Photo by Andy Devlin/NHLI via Getty Images

Quinn’s Questions is a new, hopefully regular feature where you the fans tell us your thoughts, through your vote and hopefully in the comments, as well. It’s named after Quinn Hughes, Pat Quinn, or both, depending on your age and era.

Results of Previous Quinn’s Question: Besides Thatcher Demko, who is the best goalie in the Pacific Division?

Jacob Markstrom (Calgary Flames) - 86%

Other - 9%

Robin Lehner (Vegas Golden Knights) - 4%

Jack Campbell (Edmonton Oilers) - 2%

The Canucks’ defence has been — and always is, really — a hot topic of discussion. In the entire history of the franchise, it can be argued that the club has never truly had a number one defenceman. Even on the best team in franchise history — the 2011 Canucks — their defensive strength was more in the aggregate, with exceptional depth, rather than a true number one.

Things have changed now, though, and Quinn Hughes has emerged as a premier defender in the NHL. This fact, though, does not change that there are major structural problems with the team’s blue line; now, though, the problem is their lack of depth. Beyond Hughes, Oliver Ekman-Larsson had a perfectly competent 2021-2022 campaign, and Tyler Myers had his moments. For my money, they’re both flawed but capable second pair defenders. Beyond this trio, though, it’s hard to say who the best name is. They might just not have a true fourth top four defender.

Luke Schenn filled in admirably last year, playing decently heavy minutes. As a full-time fixture though, I have my doubts that he can be a fix. Jack Rathbone has high upside, but is he ready to be a difference maker (or even a full-time roster player) next year? Travis Dermott is an intriguing name, but not one who has ever established himself as a top-four, slam dunk player. Poolman has received high praise from management, but again, feels better suited as a depth guy. These are all good, but not great players, and in my view, all skaters that are better suited to a #5/6 role, or perhaps being the #4 in a pinch.

So, have at it Nucks fans. Beyond the obvious top three, who is the best Canucks defender? It’s going to be an interesting battle in training camp to be sure. I’ll put my vote with Rathbone, purely on skating and upside, but could reasonably be convinced on the other three. In particular, I think Dermott’s skating and skill makes him a compelling name. If you think the next best defender is like, Kyle Burroughs or Jett Woo or something, well, sorry, but not really. Have your say in the comments!


After Hughes, OEL, and Myers, who is the Canucks fourth best defenceman?

This poll is closed

  • 46%
    Luke Schenn
    (74 votes)
  • 22%
    Jack Rathbone
    (36 votes)
  • 27%
    Travis Dermott
    (43 votes)
  • 3%
    Tucker Poolman
    (6 votes)
159 votes total Vote Now