Connect with us


What it Will Take for the Canucks to Make the Playoffs

The Canucks have found themselves in a playoff crunch. Here’s what they’ll need to do if they’re going to make it.

The Vancouver Canucks have done the impossible: They’ve come out and beaten the top team in the division, twice in a row, after being sick in bed for the last month. Still, a slow first half of the season has left the Canucks in a tricky spot: 8 points behind Montreal for the fourth playoff spot, with 4 games in hand.

The Canucks had incredible success in last year’s playoffs, losing in Game 7 of the Semifinal- a nail-biter of a Game 7 that came right down to the last few minutes. Do the players believe they’re still the same team that won two rounds of playoff hockey last year? Of course they do. Here’s what will need to happen for the Canucks to make the playoffs in 2021.

Related: Series of Tweets Celebrating Marleau’s All-Time Games Played Milestone

1. Sweep the Ottawa Senators

The Canucks are set to play the Ottawa Senators 4 times in a row over the next week- a team against whom the Canucks have had great success so far in the season. The two hockey clubs have played each other five times this season, Vancouver winning all five games.

If the Canucks are able to pull off the full-season sweep of the Ottawa Senators, they’ll be neck-and-neck with the Habs, who, as stated, are currently 8 points ahead of the Canucks.

2. Strong Pressure from Team Leaders

Prior to Sunday’s game against the Maple Leafs, Team Captain Bo Horvat was asked by reporters if he thought the Canucks would get “steamrolled”. Bo’s reply exposed a chip on his shoulder: “We’re ready to go. We want to win. People can say what they want and think that we’re gonna get steamrolled and I think that’s just more fuel to the fire to prove them wrong.”

Horvat certainly showed that fire in Sunday’s game, scoring two goals, including the overtime winner.

Bo Horvat Canucks
Bo Horvat Canucks photo via YouTube

The Canucks are a team that thrives with strong leadership. When the younger players see Bo Horvat give it everything he’s got on a rush, they feed off of it. When they see J.T. Miller go down to block a shot in the dying seconds of a period, they rally around it.

If the leaders continue to set the stage, the others will follow, and the Canucks will have success.

3. Secondary Scoring

Star players are certainly important, but you can’t have long-term success if the majority of your goals come from the same two or three players. The Canucks have had great secondary scoring from the likes of Nils Hoglander, Tanner Pearson, Brandon Sutter, and various defensemen.

If the Canucks are going to make a push for the playoffs, they can’t rely on just the top line to score.

4. Goaltending

Until this point in the season, Braden Holtby has struggled as a Canuck. With Thatcher Demko still on the COVID Protocol List, however, Holtby has been forced to start the last two games. And those two games have been his best of the season.

Despite facing 39 and 40 shots respectively in the two games against the Leafs, Holtby managed to come up with some huge saves, along with all-around solid play, and kept the Canucks in both of those games.

Until Demko returns, Holtby will have to hold down the fort. But, if the Canucks are able to get consistent, solid play out of both guys the rest of the season, they’ll have a much better shot at making the playoffs.

It may be a long shot, but the Canucks still have a chance. The fans may not believe it, the media may not believe it, and the other teams may not believe it, but the Vancouver Canucks certainly believe that they can be one of the four Canadian teams in the playoffs this year.

Next: Maple Leafs’ Nylander Escapes Benching, Now We’re Guessing Why?



  1. Pingback: Scribe Writes Flames "Should be Open to Offers on Matthew Tkachuk"

  2. Pingback: Scribe Writes Flames "Should be Open to Offers on Matthew Tkachuk" » 观看直播

Leave a Reply

More News

Discover more from NHL Trade Talk

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading