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Canucks Look Down the Barrel Of Tough Decisions This Summer

And with a blink of an eye the Canucks season was over. 0-3 versus the San Jose Sharks during the regular season, and now 0-4 against those same team in the post season resulting in the Canucks being swept and eliminated in the 1st round of the playoffs for the second straight year.

After a heartbreaking finish to the Canucks season, questions now loom as to what direction the Canucks will be headed, and who will be in town once training camp begins to help direct the team in their new direction. One of the biggest decisions that Canucks management needs to make is whether or not Coach Alain Vigneault returns to the team. I myself believe he will not return, but there are many who would argue against me, and for good reason. In his time in Vancouver, Vigneault has won more games than any other coach in Canuck history, he has won the Jack Adams award, led the Canucks to 2 Presidents Cup trophies, and just 2 short years ago led the team to the Stanley Cup Finals. Although Alain has accomplished all of these feats in his time in Vancouver, his time may just be up. It may just might be that the players need a new voice to listen to, and refocus them, and fully commit themselves on, and off the ice.

Speaking of players, in particular the goalies, the most important decision this off-season will be to trade away either Roberto Luongo or Cory Schneider. Most people believe that since Cory Schneider was just recently signed to a new contract last year, and the fact that he is much younger than Luongo,  he will be the goalie that the Canucks, and General Manager Mike Gillis will decide to stick with. Ironically, Luongo has already put his Yaletown condo on sale for $4.2M.

Looking back at what a crazy year it was, do not be surprised if the complete opposite instead happens. Luongo once against showed the hockey universe that he is still an elite NHL goalie, and has a couple more years of high-level hockey left in him. Now that Luongo has proven that he is still capable of leading a team forward, maybe the Canucks should consider trading the younger Schneider, and get more value out of a trade involving him. Although this idea has been tossed around numerous times, the Canucks will need to figure out their goal-tending situation as soon as possible and before before next season in order to avoid another huge distraction.

With an offseason that has so much uncertainty tied to it, the Canucks would be wise to take their time, and fans should prepare themselves for any surprises thrown their way.

Written by: Hamed Amiri

(See also: The lighter side of the Canucks)

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