Aug 14, 2012, 1:15 PM EDT
From July 16-Aug 14, we’ll be profiling all 30 NHL teams by recapping what they did this offseason and previewing their upcoming campaigns.
51-22-9, 111 points. First in the Northwest Division, first in the Western Conference, Presidents’ Trophy winners. Lost in the conference quarterfinals to Los Angeles (4-1).
First round, 26th overall — Brendan Gaunce, C (OHL Belleville)
Vancouver’s summer narrative was — and continues to be — the plight of Roberto Luongo.
So, why no deal?
Canucks GM Mike Gillis repeatedly preached patience during summer — then practiced it throughout. He said the club would be comfortable heading into next season with both Luongo and Schneider in the mix, and doesn’t appear to be bluffing…though it should be noted that, with labor uncertainty, Gillis might have additional extra decision-making time at his disposal.
Vancouver will be similar up front but feature an altered look on the blueline. Gone is one of the longest-tenured Canucks (Salo) and a pair of depth guys in Gragnani and Rome, the latter registering a career-high in points last season.
It seems likely that Garrison — a hard-shooting power play ace — will step in and replace Salo, while Keith Ballard could end his stay in Alain Vigneault’s doghouse and play a more significant role. The 29-year-old veteran appeared in a career-low 47 games last year and, given his $4.2 million cap hit, is probably expected to do more in his third year with the club.
In short, the Canucks seem to have adopted the offseason strategy of the Bruins, the team that beat them in the 2011 Stanley Cup finals:
Forget last year’s quick playoff exit, embrace a new starting goalie, trust the core veteran group and try to make another run.
Have your say
Vote in our poll and let us know what you think of the Canucks’ 2012-13 outlook in the comments section.
- Happy now? Kessel dropped 13 lbs. this summer 3
- Rich Peverley retires from NHL, joins Stars’ front office 6
- Update: Multiple witnesses reportedly subpoenaed in Patrick Kane rape investigation 28
- Jonathan Toews talks about the Patrick Kane situation 28
- Voynov detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement 24
- Ex-‘Hawks goalie Raanta tees off on former club 31
- Report: Hawks feel Kane ‘disrespected’ team, have received trade calls 119
- Hawks’ biggest question: What happens with Patrick Kane? 82
- Hall of Famer Al Arbour passes away 22
- Poll: Who will be San Jose’s next captain? 24
- Report: Hawks feel Kane ‘disrespected’ team, have received trade calls (119)
- Hawks’ biggest question: What happens with Patrick Kane? (82)
- Report: Hawks’ Kane has not been asked to waive his no-move clause (49)
- Lucic jokes about running through Rask ‘like I did (to) another goalie’ (43)
- It’s Chicago Blackhawks day at PHT (41)