The Vancouver Canucks have been able to excite their fanbase since the start of the season with young rookie sensation Elias Pettersson, who despite missed a few games with concussion-like symptoms, has managed to return to form and get people out of their seats.
However, while Pettersson and his teammates are able to tally some goals, it seems like goalie Jacob Markstrom has struggled to stop pucks and has been buried in goals in the past two games. In both games, the first against the Winnipeg Jets on Monday and the second against the Anaheim Ducks last night, the Canucks managed to score three goals in the contest, but Markstrom still did not give them the chance to record a win.
This sure gets people asking the same questions over and over: is Markstrom truly starting goalie material and should the Canucks look to the unrestricted free agent market to find a solution in between the pipes?
Jason Botchford of Vancouver's The Athletic doesn't like that he thinks that way, but he finally came to realize yesterday on the air of TSN 1040 how the Canucks need to protect young players moving forward by giving them a netminder that can stop pucks. He explained how the team should take a look at the UFA market to find a goalie worthy of making a significant roster change.
"I'm closer to the do it side than a lot of people are, which troubles me. I know this is going to take years, but I look to next yr and I see a defense with Juolevi, Hughes, a defense that hasn't improved much.I don't want that group under water.
"I don't want Hughes and Juolevi watching Markstrom give games away. Do I want an environment where Hughes and Juolevi are on a team where the QB throws a pick-six to start each game? So I'm not sure I'm all in on Bobrovksy, but appreciate people who are."
Of course, the most popular UFA goalie out there is Columbus Blue Jackets' Sergei Bobrovsky, who is expected to command a huge raise and a long contract that could leave him in an organization until retirement. Not sure this is the way the Canucks wants to go, especially with the Russian goaltender seeking a contract similar to the one Carey Price signed. In July 2017, the Montreal Canadiens signed Price to an eight-year contact extension that reportedly carries an annual cap hit of $10.5 million, making the 29-year-old the highest-paid goaltender in hockey.
It would be an interesting shakeup, but the Canucks just took a huge one last night.The Canucks announced they had replaced chief operating officer Jeff Stipec and longtime Canucks executive TC Carling also left the organization. A major shakeup in the front office!
We are sure Canucks fans can appreciate the idea of providing the best option in between the pipes for the team moving forward, however, at what cost, that remains to be seen...