NWSB Picks: The weekly Vancouver Canucks three stars

Top performing Canucks March 17-24th

After some very disappointing recent weeks, the Vancouver Canucks kicked it up into a long awaited higher gear. The wins weren’t all pretty, but that’s what us fans have been waiting for: our team to win the close ones.

Nobody cruises through a schedule in picture perfect form, so winning the gritty, hard-fought battles is vital for any team’s playoff dreams to become real.

But no matter how great it feels to have won four straight games, the Minnesota Wild have heated up at the exact same time. Vancouver will have to keep their foot on the gas if they hope to win their division again this year. After winning four out of five games, the ‘Nucks are getting us excited for playoff hockey. Here are the three stars from the past week of action.

Third star – Jannik Hansen

Unlike some weeks, this past week for the Canucks there were many standouts. Jannik Hansen was one of them. Having a very solid overall season, Hansen continued his stellar play last week with points in three of the five Vancouver games.

Hansen was one of the Canucks' top performers this past week.

Hansen was one of the Canucks’ top performers this past week.

And as I’ve said before, it’s his style of play that is also greatly appreciated. His speed and creativity make him a gem to watch. I wouldn’t call this a breakout year for the Dane, but maybe he’s ramping up for an amazing postseason. We will surely be watching.

Second star – Jordan Schroeder

At only five-foot-eight, Jordan Schroeder surprises many opponents with his abilities. He has a unique combination of speed and toughness that makes him a great two-way centre. His season has been rather streaky, but when he’s on, he’s really on.

Last week Schroeder racked up three assists to complement a goal.

He’s certainly not the biggest on the ice–in fact he’s usually the smallest. But there is never a lack of effort from number 45, and that has earned him the second star.

First star – Mason Raymond

I know what you’re thinking, ‘no Sedins on the list!?’ That’s correct! Although the twins had a solid week, these other guys stole the spotlight, especially Mason Raymond.

Maybe he caught wind of some trade talk rumors in the past few weeks because something motivated this guy to have an amazing week. Raymond, always known for his speed–but often questioned for hand skills–tallied two goals and two assists in the past week.

There are few players in the league who can keep up with this guy when he’s really skating, and when he keeps solid control of the puck coming in fast, it’s a pretty thing to watch. Raymond has always quietly been one of my favorite Canucks, and I get to reward him for it for his performances last week.

Hope he keeps it up and helps us get back to first in the division.

Starting the week with a loss put all fans a bit on edge again due to the very unpredictable and often disappointing play as of late. But the boys in blue pulled up their socks to round up four consecutive wins. They were well deserved wins, and also very much needed wins.

The neck in neck battle with Minnesota continues as we jock back and forth for first in the division. Vancouver has some very win-able games upcoming; let’s hope they extend this winning streak.

Here is the Vancouver Canucks goal of the week, a beauty by Mason Raymond


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About Bryan McFarlane

Bryan no longer writes for NWSB
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