58 Game Report for the Vancouver Canucks
The last time I gave a Vancouver Canucks report (or report card if you prefer) was on November 7th. You can read it here!  At that time the Canucks had played a mere 15 games of the regular season. In re-reading that evaluation I decided it was time to provide an update on my thoughts as the trade deadline and playoffs are nearing. So here it is…

Vancouver Canucks to Date
With a current record of 37-15-6 and positioned in 2nd place over all in the Western Conference with a record that also represents 2nd overall in the NHL behind only the Detroit Red Wings, the team sits 3rd in goals scored with 189 behind only Philidelphia (193) and Boston (190). For goals against… well that remains similar to my previous post and the Canucks are OK but not great in this category.

Forwards
Mid-season scoring was a challenge for the Canucks. Their current record is due in part from secondary scoring coming from the third and fourth lines which have vaulted the Canucks to their current position, the best players have not been their best. Luckily as of late the Sedins and Burrows have been clicking the past couple of weeks. Add to that a power play that had struggled but is now a surging power play and has finally got the offence on track. Byron Bitz has added some great toughness and surprising scoring punch to the bottom six.

15 Game Grade: B+
58 Game Grade: B+

Defence
The Canucks D-men struggled early, particularly Kevin Bieksa. However Bieksa and the blue liners seemed to be turning it around. The boys on the blue line have been great of late and in particular Bieksa and Hamhius have turned into a great number one pairing and Edler with Salo, who could be a number one on any other other team have been great as a second pairing. While a mix of late, the third pair of Rome, Alberts, Sulzer, Ballard and now Tanev and been solid too!

15 Game Grade: B
58 Game Grade: A-

Goalies
I’ll be the first to admit my shock and awe at Luongo’s 3 straight shoot-out wins… didn’t think he had it in him! But I’m still not sold… I may have a man crush on Schneider, but he seems to be the real deal and when the opportunity presents itself (whether the team shows up or not) he rises to the challenge. If this blog had been written two weeks ago the Grade would have been different, but with Lou’s shoot-out play of late and Schneider’s overall solidness here it is:

15 Game Grade: C
58 Game Grade: B

Feel fee to leave a comment or opinion on your thoughts as NHL playoffs approach!