NHL Offseason Review: Vancouver Canucks

Free Agency Moves

The Vancouver Canucks have had no trouble make the Stanley Cup Playoffs in recent years. In fact, the Canucks have been seven out of the past nine years. However, while that statistic is all well and good, it’s the Stanley Cup trophy that Vancouver is still trying to track down.

The Canucks entered the offseason looking to make some crucial decisions in terms of their roster, and perhaps they wound up making the right ones. Vancouver added a physical forward in Brandon Prust in a trade with Montreal, and it has to be considered a good deal considering how well Prust played his role during his time with the Canadiens. He appeared in every game that Montreal played a season ago, so at least Vancouver knows that it is getting someone that is reliable in that regard.

But while the Canucks did well in acquiring Prust, it might have been the exits that will ultimately hurt Vancouver in its push at another post-season run.

The franchise did send away defenseman Kevin Bieksa to Anaheim for a second round draft choice next season, and goaltender Eddie Lack was also traded as well in exchange for picks.

Draft Selections

Vancouver hoped that it could add a lot of depth to its current roster with its draft choices. With the 23rd overall selection, the Canucks went with right wing Brock Boeser, and then got defenseman Guillaume Brisebois in the 66th spot.

Graphic via zimbio

Boeser has proved that he knows how to score goals in the United States Hockey League, and he should be able to bring value in terms of adding points for this franchise. As for Brisebois, he’s a nice defenseman that has the potential to be a solid NHL player in the future.

The Canucks also added other players like Dmitri Zhukenov and Carl Neill to the mix, but it’ll be Boeser that obviously draws the most attention given his first-round selection.

Coaching Changes

After Willie Desjardins came on as head coach in June of 2014, last season would have had to go really bad for him to be removed from his post after just one year.

Luckily, the Canucks will still be led by Desjardins as they enter the 2015-2016 season, but it’ll be the roster that decides how long the current head coach stays in place.

Looking Ahead to the Season

Vancouver certainly finds itself in an interesting spot. After another early-round playoff exit, there is no questioning the fact that Canucks fans are starting to get impatient.

With some important players traded away, and others looking to step their game up to prevent any type of letdown, the Canucks will have a lot to prove when the new season gets underway.

Capturing the Stanley Cup trophy is never easy to do, and honestly, it may be hard to see Vancouver doing that during the upcoming season. While there is plenty of talent in place, there’s still a trust factor that’s hard to move past with this team.

However, should the current roster progress nicely, then the Canucks do in fact have the opportunity to push past their recent playoff woes and find themselves back in title contention once again.

Graphic via snipview

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