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Photo Credit: Darrel Dyck, The Canadian Press

Canucks Army Year In Review: Loui Eriksson

If you look up the word “disappointment” in the latest edition of Webster’s dictionary, chances are you’ll see this picture next to the definition.

Taken just mere moments after Loui Eriksson put the puck in his own net in his first game as a Canuck, the image came to exemplify his first season in Vancouver.

Not much went right for Eriksson, who aside from having one of the better goal songs on the team did very little of note in 2016-17. He finished the season with just 11 goals and 24 points, the worst totals of his career since his rookie year.

Eriksson failed to capitalize on his opportunities while playing with the Sedin twins, which left him playing alongside role players for much of the season. The results were mostly forgettable. After Henrik and Daniel Sedin, Eriksson’s most common linemates were Markus Granlund and Brandon Sutter. Eriksson managed just a single goal in 173 minutes while skating on that line.

What’s

Obviously, Eriksson’s season was disappointing by any standard, but luck appears to have played a significant role. Eriksson carried very low personal and on-ice shooting percentages relative to the rest of his career, and even based on the eye test appeared snakebitten for much of the season.

To his credit, Eriksson’s defensive play never eroded, as he finished the season with the third-highest score and venue adjusted shot-share among Canucks regulars. Eriksson also had a positive possession impact on all but one of his teammates.

 

While Eriksson’s individual shot rates have been on a slow decline over the past few seasons, they haven’t reached such a nadir as to explain his awful counting stats.  Having a bounce-back 2018-19 season seems almost like a foregone conclusion at this point. Eriksson’s traditionally feasted on the power play, something he was unable to do across his first season in Vancouver due to unfavourable deployment. Hopefully that’s something that changes under Travis Green. With better linemates and better luck, it’s likely he’ll come closer to being what the Canucks envisioned when they signed him. It’ll be a long way to go before he earns that contract, though.

  • Roy

    You have to factor in the over-exposure of the Sedins in general this season as well as the abysmal power play, and by that I mean its setup and deployment, not the players per se. The power play is one of the most frustrating and annoying things about this team as it has sucked ostrich eggs through straws for three seasons and counting, and nothing has been done about it. It’s like someone dragging a dead stuffed dog around and pretending like its alive.

    • The missing link to our power play is a defenseman like Sami Salo. Someone who can quarterback the power play. Someone who can carry the puck up the ice. Someone with a rocket of a shot. Salo was that, as well as Christian Ehrhoff. Our winning stat went way up with these two in the lineup.

      • Double U Tee Eff

        The problem with our PP is lack of puck movement……. where instead we have 2 slow and predictable twins that cycle the puck into oblivion along the wall until they turn it over and its cleared out. The opposition loves it because in effect we kill our own PP.

        • Pat Quinn Way

          Exactly – while we are for sure lacking a Salo/Ehrhoff type QB on the powerplay, it’s the twins who are killing the pp. This team is going nowhere until they are bought out/retired or demoted to 3rd liners and 2nd powerplay unit where they now belong at best.

          It’s so obvious but so many refuse to accept it… why?

  • TheRealPB

    This is a fair assessment — a combination of bad luck and bad usage contributed to this poor season no doubt. Eriksson also took a while to get going after the Seguin trade to Boston. I still think this is a defensible signing a la Miller; you still need to have good veterans to provide at least some shelter for all the young players and the Megnas and Biegas of the world are simply not going to cut it

  • Pat Quinn Way

    Again, this is another classic example of Benning’s complete ineptitude in how to build a playoff contender like his former boss Peter Chiarelli has done so well in only two years since Edmonton landed McDavid!

    Eriksson was signed for top, top dollar and ridiculous term to appease and play with the Sedins, but not only does his net-front ‘dirty goal’ scoring style not mesh with the Sedins perimeter cycle game, the fact is they will they be retired long before this albatross contract is up.

    There were so many better options last off season – why can’t the fans see this?

    #benningthefraud
    #blindleadingtheblind
    #notmygm
    #firebenning

    • Holly Wood

      Pleeeez stop pumping the Oiler tires. If they hadn’t stumbled their way to landing McDavid and then being able to attract some decent free agents they would still be bottom feeders. Kevin Lowe may have even pulled that off

    • TheRealPB

      What were the other great options last summer? There is no denying that Eriksson had a rough year but which of the prize free agents really panned out? Lucic, Okposo, Brouwer, Backes, Boedkker, Nielsen, all signed for big bucks and seriously underperformed. It was a weak FA class and the kind of player that Eriksson is there’s still value to be had in this signing.

  • Canuck4Life20

    One thing that struck me as being off with Eriksson right from the start was hearing that he and his family were just getting into town after the World Cup and still had to find a place to stay. He had been signed since July 1st and apparently hadn’t even visited the city prior to showing up for training camp. Wouldn’t it have helped the transition if he had shown up even in August, got his family settled before hockey started, and maybe got in a few training sessions with his new teammates?

  • Sandpaper

    Enough with this garbage excuse that he plays better in 2nd season with team. That happened once for him and at 6 million per.
    I remember many on here wanting this signing and several are singing a different tune now.
    Under a different user name is was chastise for my opinion of being adamantly opposed to this signing.
    Sometimes we get what we deserve.
    His greatest moment as a Canuck was the own goal early in season.

  • Sandpaper

    Enough with this garbage excuse that he plays better in 2nd season with team. That happened once for him and at 6 million per.
    I remember many on here wanting this signing and several are singing a different tune now.
    Under a different user name i was chastised for my opinion of being adamantly opposed to this signing.
    Sometimes we get what we deserve.
    His greatest moment as a Canuck was the own goal early in season.

    • Giant-Nation

      Oilers GM is a Wizard lol, Mcdavid and 4 other first overall picks is a clear indication he Benifited from the worst run org in the league. How hard is is to sell Lucic to come and play with Mcdavid. Canucks are going to have to go through some painful years as well, and then get to a tipping point for playoff success, I just hope Benning is still around for it.