The CanucksArmy Roundtable is back for a second straight week! This time we’re talking roster optimization, and we’re a ways away from the crease, too.
The Canucks forwards have been in a constant state of flux this week, as players come in and out of the lineup due to injuries and their eventual recovery. First, Markus Granlund sat out the Canucks 5-3 win over the Calgary Flames on Tuesday, and that meant that Brendan Gaunce could make his debut, returning from shoulder surgery. Now both are healthy, and it doesn’t sound like Loui Eriksson, who’s been out since October 14th with a knee sprain, isn’t far behind.
Last night, with Gaunce and Granlund both in the Canucks lineup, they chose to send Alexander Burmistrov to the press box. I didn’t think that the best decision available to them, so I thought it best to bring the question to the CanucksArmy staff so that I could hear their thoughts.
So, what do they think should happen now that the Canucks are getting healthy?
I would look to run with something like this for a game or two. I may even slide Boucher in ahead of Gaunce if he is still with the team for their next game. Maybe Granny and the twins get each other going.
For me, it’s Alexander Burmistrov who should sit in the press box.
The Canucks need to keep playing Virtanen. Even if that’s a fourth line role, it’s important for him to keep getting his reps in at the NHL level. Gaunce and Granlund provides the Canucks with some versatility as they can both play centre or the wing if need. I’d like to see Gaunce play exactly where Burmistrov has been, between Vanek and Gagner.
I’d also say Burmistrov. Virtanen has shown well and Dorsett’s making his case for the Hart Trophy (jokes). At the beginning of the year, both guys were the two that were thought to be the most expendable, but both have played really well and it would be puzzling _and_ a bit frustrating if they were taken out of lineup up. Burmistrov hasn’t necessarily played bad, but Virtanen and Dorsett have just played better.
I’m going to disagree with Ryan and Vanessa here, as I think Burmistrov has more than earned his role with the Canucks. Derek Dorsett, on the other hand… The goals were great while they lasted, but the reality is that you can’t expect that production to continue, and in light of that, you can’t really argue he’s bringing much to the team. Dorsett’s underlying metrics are some kind of ugly, and if it’s not already starting to cost the Canucks, it soon will.