Top Canucks April 14th to 21st
I’m certainly sounding like a broken record by starting off by saying, “The Vancouver Canucks finished up another up-and-down week,” but it’s once again true. The boys in blue just can’t seem to keep up good, consistent play for the length of a week.
This is troubling to think about heading into the postseason. I certainly wouldn’t say we are backing into the playoffs by any means, but we are definitely not ‘hot’. As we all witnessed last season, it’s who’s hot that you must worry about this time of year.
I’m not sure who, or what, to blame for these lapses the Canucks keep falling into, but it is getting very old, as you might agree.
Despite the ups and downs, there were a few players who maintained their ‘up’ last week for the Canucks.
Third star – Alexander Edler
Alex Edler has had a fairly rough season, according to fans. After getting a big contract extension, the defenceman’s productivity dropped substantially, and the Vancouver faithful made a note of venting their frustrations surrounding that.
To me, it was no more a disappointment than a number of former and current Canucks’ lack of production and/or that ability to step up and be an elite player. But Edler had a solid bounce-back week for his club, tallying two goals and an assist.
The only way to really silence your critics is to perform on the ice. I hope for the team’s sake that he performs this well in the opening round of the playoffs.
Second star – Ryan Kesler
It really is nice to have this guy back. I’m not always his biggest fan, but he brings a certain confidence and swagger to a team that desperately lacks both of those intangibles.
Ryan Kesler is a great combination of skill and intelligence. He’s similar to a Sedin (both of whom are honourable mentions on this list), but he plays with more passion – or so it appears.
I realize the twins are well-oiled machines who show no human emotion at times, and that’s fine; but I love that Kes has attitude. He has certainly brought back some solid scoring threats and overall confidence to the group since his injury. He had a good week with two goals to accompany an assist.
If his 2011 playoffs were an indicator, we really want him on the ice in the coming weeks. He can be a force in the clutch.
First star – Derek Roy
The new face got hot. Derek Roy, who the Canucks acquired just before the deadline, had a slow start in Vancouver. Fans definitely had too high of expectations for him, as they often do in this city, but after getting settled in with his new teammates, the Canadian centre has begun to flourish.
Roy managed two goals and two assists last week to earn him the first star. He also brings that tough, veteran leadership and mentality that can spread positively through the locker room.
If he can impact this team’s psyche and give them a mental edge in the playoffs, he was officially worth signing.
Leadership is something this team has lacked since Linden, and it would be great to have some guys on the roster who can lead when the going gets tough.
Here is the Canucks’ goal of the week: a beauty by Roy in his return to Dallas: