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Defence rebuild


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So it seems Luongo has finally fallen from his place in the NHL elite. It took me until now to admit it, but Luongo cannot be a good goaltender on a good team. He won gold this year, but that was because he had the best team in the world in front of him. Luongo should have been removed from the lineup after his dismal performance in the first round. Why keep him in the lineup? Because he was good at one point? Because hes the captain? An honour that was too much for him to begin with. Because hes making a ridiculous sum of money? This playoff disappointment is not all Luongo, but i think a Schneider and Raycroft tandem could have done better in net. I dont think Luongo won a single game for them this postseason, and was inconsistent at best.

Vigneault is a good coach and im generally happy with what he does with the team, but his line juggling, and constant tweeking has to stop. The Sedins Burrows line was great as it was, and a struggling Burrows isnt going to be helped by being shuffled off his line. The offensive lines were good enough to win the division, and win Sedin the Art Ross, and shold have been left alone for the playoffs. There is no need for Demitra to be playing the point on the PP. The Canucks defense scores enough on its own. Unleash the defense on the PP, dont remove them. Was it pride alone that kept Luongo in the net? There were many games where an early pulling could have helped the team, including game 6, where Luongo looked like Cloutier. And more than anything, Andrew Alberts, should never have laced up his skates for the Canucks, after almost costing the Canucks the first round. He has bad turnovers, takes terrible penalties, and was not once an asset on the ice. Vigneault should not have played him. Bring anybody from the Moose in and give them a chance.

This summer the Canucks need to do whatever they can to rebuild their defence. The Canucks defence prospects are limited to say the very least, and what theyre working with isnt enviable at the moment. Salo is too often injured, Bieksa is too unreliable, who knows if mitchell will ever be back, and my thoughts on Alberts are already known. Keeping Erhoff and Edler are the number one priority. They are both talented players, and are the best on the team right now. A healthy Salo is definitely top 2, but thats rare. O'brien would be a good guy to keep around, but only him or Bieksa should be kept, and in the third pairing. Trade away whoever it takes to rebuild the back end, and try to get some defence prospects in the system.

With Grabner, Hodgson, and Schroeder on the way, the Canucks have the offence and role players on the front end that they dont need to worry about that for a few seasons.

Luongo should be stripped of the captaincy for his own benefit, and have his role reduced further. Make him fight for his place as the number one goalie in Vancouver and get him back into the form that he was in while playing for Florida. We need Luongo stealing games again.

If the Canucks cant find a way to rebuild their defence, while keeping the team somewhat in tact, then we will be looking at a Oilers/Toronto slump in the near future. Offence cannot win championships, and the Canucks do not have the team to win now or seriously contend for a long time.

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