Canucks work with Skills Coach, hope to bump scoring slump

Kristin Reid just tweeted that some of the snakebitten Canucks – Mason Raymond, Jeff Tambellini, Alex Burrows and Tanner Glass – are working with Skills Coach Glenn Carnegie.

That’s probably good news for you poolies out there.

It’s been a tough stretch of games for what is one of the NHL’s highest-scoring teams. Since a 6-1 pounding of the Edmonton Oilers on January 7th, the Canucks have lost 5 of 7 games, including their last 3 games, and have been shut out twice. The good news is, they’ve managed to earn points loser points along the way and have somehow managed to hang on to 1st place in the Western Conference, but there’s no doubting the scoring slump some – actually most – of the guys are in.

Given the Canucks’ torrid pace through most of December and January, I suppose it was inevitable that the offense would start to dry up. I can’t pinpoint exactly when this started but it’s worth noting that the Canucks scored 44 goals in 11 games between December 8th and December 31st and only 27 goals in 11 games since January 1st.

And of their 27 goals since the calendar turned to 2011, the Sedin line, Ryan Kesler, Kevin Bieksa, Alex Edler and Christian Ehrhoff combined to score 23 of them.

As recently as yesterday, coach Alain Vigneault has stood up for the rest of the roster.

The Vancouver Canucks may have a quintet of forwards in deep scoring slumps, but head coach Alain Vigneault isn’t upset because the team is still winning.

“That should be everybody’s focus,” Vigneault said heading into Thursday’s home game against the San Jose Sharks. “Our guys might be having a tough time finishing, but as far as on the ice, they’re doing the right things.”

To be fair, Raymond, Tambellini and Jannik Hansen still create their fair share of offensive chances. Even Mikael Samuelsson has, albeit only in (very) small spurts. Guys like Manny Malhotra, Raffi Torres and Tanner Glass aren’t counted on for much offense, though it would be nice if they chipped in with the odd goal.

So what now that they’re not winning?

You have to think that they’re bound to bump the slump. At some point, the puck will start going back in the net again. Maybe some time with Carnegie will help. At least hopefully it does.

J.J. Guerrero

Founder and Executive Editor of Canucks Hockey Blog. Proud Canadian, hardcore Canucks fan. I would like nothing more than watching the Canucks win the Stanley Cup. Against the Leafs.

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