[Every Monday, Katie Maximick takes your questions and gives her take on the Canucks in her own cantankerous style. If you have any questions about the Canucks, send it to her via Twitter (@canucksgirl44)]
Photo credit: canucks.nhl.com
The Canucks are finishing the month of January at a less-than-inspiring L10 record of 4-2-4, a bit of a slump compared to how they began the New Year (7-0-3). Shootout woes, the injury bug and scoring slumps have been plaguing the team for most of the past month. After a month of near perfection and little to complain about, suddenly many fans finally have something (or a lot) to talk about.
Stephanie (@stephnav) asks: What do you think the Canucks need to do to break out of their mini slump?
A lot of Redbull or a swift kick in the ass. You decide.
The Canucks aren’t exactly tanking, as they are managing to at least get a point when they lose in the shootout, but is this type of performance good enough for a Cup contender? Frankly, no. Although Henrik Sedin pointed out that if the team had won in their last two shootouts, that their performance wouldn’t be a big issue, I disagree. They’ve already lost the top spot in the league to the Flyers, and Detroit is hot on their heels to overtake them in the Western Conference if this play continues; the Canucks are lucky that the Red Wings are battling injury problems of their own.
Many Vancouver forwards scorers aren’t scoring (to be discussed below) and this is what’s affecting the team the most. Luongo has been playing very well, and despite injuries, the Canucks’ blue line is doing the best that it can and is often producing more goals than the team’s forwards, like Alex Edler against the Flames.
Kayli (@CanuckKayli13) asks: What do you think is the key to breaking those scoring slumps of the few forwards?
There are quite a few scoring slumps on the roster to mention here. Daniel Sedin hasn’t scored in four games but this is nothing compared to five other Canucks forwards who are scoreless in over 10 games. As I mentioned in my post last week, the third line hasn’t scored in almost a month, and to quote The Province’s Ed Willies: “Jeff Tambellini is 0-for-his-last-13 games. Mason Raymond is 0-for-11. Manny Malhotra is not only is goal-less in his last 12, he’s also pointless. The list is actually longer but there are space limitations here.”
So what to do? Is there even anything that can be done aside from demoting or benching some of these forwards (like Samuelsson or Malhotra) until they smarten up? Even I’m at a loss for words about what to do with this problem. And that, my friends, says a lot.