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Five Step Plan to return to the Cup!


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#1 gradin123

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 02:15 AM

I am a huge lifelong Canucks fan and therefore I am willing to give Gillis, free of charge, the blueprint that gives the Canucks the best shot at coming back to the Cup next year. If he uses it and it works all I want is 2 Tickets to all the Cup Finals games next year.

Here is the five step plan.

1. Re-Sign Bieksa because he seems willing to re-sign at a reasonable price and he has great chemistry with Hamhuis.

2. Try to re-sign Ehrhoff but also be prepared to let him go. He is a good offensive DMan but I also think he was the beneficiary of inflated numbers because of his massive amount of PP time with the Sedins and Kesler. Don't pay $5.0 Million per for him because he is not worth it. But if he does go you need to replace him with another free agent because you can't expect a guy like Tanev or an aging Salo to effectively replace Ehrhoff's offense. If Anton Babchuk could be had for less money than Ehrhoff I think he would be a good fit. Babchuk could easily slide into Ehrhoff's role and he might be had for $1.5 million cheaper per year. I like Babchuk at $3.5 per better than Ehrhoff at $5.0 per.

3. Trade/Buyout or Send Ballard to the minors. The Canucks can not have him start the season on the roster with AV as the coach. Even if there is a different coach Ballard isn't worth $4.2 Million a year anyways. He now is coming off two subpar seasons in a row because his last year in Florida was a disappointment too. The Canucks simply cannot going into next season with his $4.2 Million cap hit on the books.

Sending him to the minors may be the best of the options. If someone claims him on waivers so be it. If he clears waivers then the Canucks can see if he plays well down there and if someone gets hurt perhaps they can recall him.

4. Sign Someone to play with Kesler. He needs real help. The Canucks need a gritty guy to play with Kesler who can actually score. Won't be easy to get but they need to find a guy and the money saved on Ballard could be used here. Might I suggest Scott Hartnell via trade?

It seems the Flyers are looking to shed some cap space to make room to sign Bryzgalov so they might be willing to trade a guy like Scott Hartnell as a pure salary dump. Btw, his cap hit is actually the same as Ballards. $4.2 Million. He would provide some of the grit the Canucks lack while still providing the ability to score goals.

5. Keep Schneider and make it a real open competition between him and Luongo for the starting job. If Schneider wins then be prepared to sign him at the end of the year to a new contract and do something drastic with Lou. It is not the Canucks job, as Gillis seems to have suggested today, to make Luongo a championship goalie. It is his job to prove he is one.

Edited by gradin123, 18 June 2011 - 09:02 AM.


#2 DownUndaCanuck

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 02:50 AM

I agree with most of that, especially 5., but we should try and keep Ehrhoff. It's not easy to find a 50-point-defenceman, and sure we have Edler who can easily hit 60 next season, but having two amazing offensive defencemen like that on the same team is a rarity.

What we need instead of Ballard is a defensive defenceman, like Mitchell and Hamhuis to play with Ehrhoff in particular, who's a lot worse defensively than Edler (he can play with Salo to compensate for his lack of physicality and speed).

You didn't mention it, but I'd want to keep as many of these players we had experience this loss as possible (ie. Higgins, Torres, Lapierre). They'll be hurting and they'll be hungrier than anyone else in the league.
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#3 cool story bro

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 03:55 AM

I like the Hartnell idea. Also, Joel Ward is a UFA for 1.2m soon, and he could fit well with Kes.

I agree about Ballard and the goaltending situation, good post
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#4 Bombastik der Teutone

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 06:24 AM

I agree with most of that, especially 5., but we should try and keep Ehrhoff. It's not easy to find a 50-point-defenceman, and sure we have Edler who can easily hit 60 next season, but having two amazing offensive defencemen like that on the same team is a rarity.

What we need instead of Ballard is a defensive defenceman, like Mitchell and Hamhuis to play with Ehrhoff in particular, who's a lot worse defensively than Edler (he can play with Salo to compensate for his lack of physicality and speed).

You didn't mention it, but I'd want to keep as many of these players we had experience this loss as possible (ie. Higgins, Torres, Lapierre). They'll be hurting and they'll be hungrier than anyone else in the league.


i also agree with the OP with most of the things and this

a "open" fight between schneider and lui would be really intersting i guess
ballard is the one who has to go...if the hoff goes...ballard cant re-place him
so he has to go

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#5 LouGongShow

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 06:29 AM

good post Op.
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#6 Underachieving Hero of CDC

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 07:54 AM

I agree with everything except #3.  Ballard had a terrible year and seemed prone to making bopneheaded plays in his own end.  However, I still think that he's a much better d-man than what he showed.  Injuries early on in the season hurt him and then AV gave him a really short leash.  I think he can refocus during the summer and get back to being the player that Gillis traded for.      
I'm not even sure how the Canucks would go about getting rid of him.  Buy him out?  He's signed long term and I don't think the Aquilinis would be too happy paying $16-17 mil just to get rid of a guy.  Trade him?  I don't think theres anybody out there that would want him based on his substantial and long term cap hit and the fact that he just put together the worst season of his career.  Better to let him improve his play before Gillis should think about trading him.  That only leaves the option of sending him to the minors.  I just flat out don't think thats going to happen.

Edited by Underachieving Hero of CDC, 18 June 2011 - 07:54 AM.


#7 Infanteer

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 08:36 AM

Nice post OP, agree with everything.

Joel Ward was mentioned - that guy showed so much grit in the WC semis - I was really impressed by him.

Edited by Infanteer, 18 June 2011 - 08:37 AM.


#8 NormE

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 08:48 AM

Very good suggestions.... I would add that a top 6 forward would be available
in a Luongo trade to Tampa Bay (needs a top goalie)for a Sean Bergenheim or
Nate Thompson who would compliment Ryan Kesler. This would be good for both
Louie (who needs another start....in Florida - where the family wants to be)
--- and allow the Canucks to hold on to a future superstar in Schneider !

Add some grit with the cap space.....need to be tougher to play against.....
where is Stan Smyl ? ---- when we need him ?

#9 canuckschick1234

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 09:37 AM

Great post. That would be great.
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#10 Fishman1

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 10:00 AM

Would like to see Lapierre back next year!!!!

#11 canacks1970

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 10:20 AM

Some interesting ideas! That's for sure. Do we know for sure what the cap situation is Gradin going into next year?
Number #3) If you thought Ballard was garbage with his fat contract who wanna trade with Gillis for
Ballard? That's going to be a tough trade if he can pull it off. You can send him down to the minors and they're still stuck with a 4 million dollar player in the farm. If someone picks him off waiver we are still stuck with a portion of his Salary against the cap. It's better off that you have a 4 million dollar on you team when wasting your money sitting in the minors.
I'm pretty sure GilLis has been thinking of what you said GOING INTO THE OFFSEASON ? Gillis and Gilman know going to this off season is going to be busy having 4 dmen that ufa's. Again depends on the cap and what players or teams will be asking.
Totally agree with the Schnieder situation. I see most people here wants to trade this guy. And keeping a kid that is cheap and doing his job,why would you want to do that if you have a 5.3 or 10 million dollar goaltender that has a occasional meltdown.
I'm pretty sure that if there a better player out there for the team either its on Dmen or forward they're going to do what's best for the team. Gillis has been known not to sit on his laurels.

Edited by canacks1970, 18 June 2011 - 10:29 AM.


#12 XX_canucks33_XX

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 10:34 AM

great post ... i agree on most of your points except:

#2 - Ehrhoff was useless in the SCF. sure he's a scorer and move the puck well, but we have great upcoming d-men from Moose: Tanev, Connauton, Sweatt, Parent

i like the idea as well with Joe Ward.

#13 EmilyRose

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 10:38 AM

We need a SEMENKO lol

#14 Mad Cow Disease

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 10:41 AM

I love the idea of signing someone like Ward or Hartnell to pair up with Kesler.

I'm also an advocate of keeping Ehrhoff. Keeping in mind he had a shoulder injury in the playoffs, he's a 50 point defenseman.

#15 Coconuts

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 10:59 AM

great post ... i agree on most of your points except:

#2 - Ehrhoff was useless in the SCF. sure he's a scorer and move the puck well, but we have great upcoming d-men from Moose: Tanev, Connauton, Sweatt, Parent

i like the idea as well with Joe Ward.


He also had a shoulder injury. He's a big part of why our powerplay couldn't get it done.

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#16 CanuckLeaf

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 11:05 AM

Very good suggestions.... I would add that a top 6 forward would be available
in a Luongo trade to Tampa Bay (needs a top goalie)for a Sean Bergenheim or
Nate Thompson who would compliment Ryan Kesler. This would be good for both
Louie (who needs another start....in Florida - where the family wants to be)
--- and allow the Canucks to hold on to a future superstar in Schneider !

Add some grit with the cap space.....need to be tougher to play against.....
where is Stan Smyl ? ---- when we need him ?


Trade Luongo for Stamkos...can you just imagine the fire power!! Kesler/Stamkos/Sedins/Burr

lol one can dream right?

oh and to the OP, no way Gillis will let Ehrhoff just walk away...best point scoring D in the team? no way, Ehrhoff is a HUGE part of our depth.

Edited by CanuckLeaf, 18 June 2011 - 11:07 AM.


#17 snucks

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 11:07 AM

Well this team was great this year but there was a lot going against them. I almost think it wouldn't have mattered if you had more tough players. If the coach insists on playing a goalie that is shaky just so he doesn't get his ego damaged then you cannot win the cup.

Edited by snucks, 18 June 2011 - 11:07 AM.


#18 snucks

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 11:10 AM

Well this team was great this year but there was a lot going against them. I almost think it wouldn't have mattered if you had more tough players. If the coach insists on playing a goalie that is shaky just so he doesn't get his ego damaged then you cannot win the cup.

#19 jovocop55

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 11:18 AM

He also had a shoulder injury. He's a big part of why our powerplay couldn't get it done.


i agree.. he and edler couldn't really shoot the puck on the PP... that's why our PP sucks..

#20 Bazooka

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 11:51 AM

Ballard is going to say, he is going to have a great season you'll see.

As for Ehrhoff, I hate to say it, but I think we lose him. He will end up with the Red Wings.
To compensate for the loss of Ehrhoff we could sign Eric Brewer, he has a 4 million cap hit.

As for up front...I really don't think there is any need for more offense. My opinion is to go with what we have until the trade deadline and if necessary at that time we have lots of trade bait that could be used to bring in a good forward.


My projected line up.

D.Sedin - H.Sedin - Burrows
Samuelson/Raymond - Kesler - Higgins
Lappierre - Malhotra - Hansen
Volpatti - Bolduc - Oreskovich

Bieksa - Hamhuis
Edler - Brewer
Salo - Ballard/ Rome
BELIEVE IN BLUE


#21 etsen3

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 11:58 AM

Good suggestions. I agree with most of it. I like the Hartnell idea. I still think Ballard should be given more of a chance but there may not be room with his 4.2 million salary. If we do send him somewhere else I would rather trade so we can get a good player in return.

#22 Lockhart

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 12:35 PM

People seem to forget that Ballard has TRADE value, to be honest I think things can work out with Ballard and I would be confident in him starting the season next year. He has the skill and all the tools to be a good player he just needs to change his game a little bit, although I would prefer to him replaced by a bigger, meaner shutdown D man.

#23 MrsCanuck

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 01:45 PM

Hartnell with Kesler would be a match made in heaven. That second line would make me drool. :lol:
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#24 magoomba

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 01:58 PM

Hockey is the only professional sport where the rules change in the playoffs (compared to regular season).

The Canucks are very successful with their current roster (skill & finess, relying on the power play) in the regular season.
Unfortunately, all the little hooks and trips don't get called in the playoffs. Ditto with all the rough housing after the whistle.

I would like to see the Canucks acquire a power forward capable of playing on the 2nd line (or even the 1st line).
Someone the team needs to be more durable. Yes, they got through the first 3 rounds, but they had significantly more
injuries to key personnel when compared to the Bruins coming into the Finals.
They need to get into the Finals healthy. I'm not sure if this group is built to last 3 rounds and remain healthy.

I'd love to see a change in goaltending, but I think we're stuck with Luongo for the foreseeable future.
Since that component won't change, we can only hope that the player (Luongo) changes.
His ego should not be trumping AV's decision making.

#25 gradin123

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 02:03 AM

I am a huge lifelong Canucks fan and therefore I am willing to give Gillis, free of charge, the blueprint that gives the Canucks the best shot at coming back to the Cup next year. If he uses it and it works all I want is 2 Tickets to all the Cup Finals games next year.

Here is the five step plan.

1. Re-Sign Bieksa because he seems willing to re-sign at a reasonable price and he has great chemistry with Hamhuis.

2. Try to re-sign Ehrhoff but also be prepared to let him go. He is a good offensive DMan but I also think he was the beneficiary of inflated numbers because of his massive amount of PP time with the Sedins and Kesler. Don't pay $5.0 Million per for him because he is not worth it. But if he does go you need to replace him with another free agent because you can't expect a guy like Tanev or an aging Salo to effectively replace Ehrhoff's offense. If Anton Babchuk could be had for less money than Ehrhoff I think he would be a good fit. Babchuk could easily slide into Ehrhoff's role and he might be had for $1.5 million cheaper per year. I like Babchuk at $3.5 per better than Ehrhoff at $5.0 per.

3. Trade/Buyout or Send Ballard to the minors. The Canucks can not have him start the season on the roster with AV as the coach. Even if there is a different coach Ballard isn't worth $4.2 Million a year anyways. He now is coming off two subpar seasons in a row because his last year in Florida was a disappointment too. The Canucks simply cannot going into next season with his $4.2 Million cap hit on the books.

Sending him to the minors may be the best of the options. If someone claims him on waivers so be it. If he clears waivers then the Canucks can see if he plays well down there and if someone gets hurt perhaps they can recall him.

4. Sign Someone to play with Kesler. He needs real help. The Canucks need a gritty guy to play with Kesler who can actually score. Won't be easy to get but they need to find a guy and the money saved on Ballard could be used here. Might I suggest Scott Hartnell via trade?

It seems the Flyers are looking to shed some cap space to make room to sign Bryzgalov so they might be willing to trade a guy like Scott Hartnell as a pure salary dump. Btw, his cap hit is actually the same as Ballards. $4.2 Million. He would provide some of the grit the Canucks lack while still providing the ability to score goals.

5. Keep Schneider and make it a real open competition between him and Luongo for the starting job. If Schneider wins then be prepared to sign him at the end of the year to a new contract and do something drastic with Lou. It is not the Canucks job, as Gillis seems to have suggested today, to make Luongo a championship goalie. It is his job to prove he is one.


I don't think I did bad. Babchuk had a bad year in Calgary after getting in Sutters doghouse but I still think he might have helped our PP but they needed to get someone to replace Ehrhoff even if it wasn't Babchuk.

Imagine if we had Hartnell? He has had a great bounceback year and is exactly the type of player the Canucks need. Phily ended up dumping Carter and Richards instead but if the Canucks had pushed for Hartnell at the time it might have happened.

I think the only step the Canucks actually followed on my list to some degree was #1 and #5

Edited by gradin123, 16 April 2012 - 02:18 AM.





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