After winning the Northwest Division by four points last season, the Vancouver Canucks are third to last in the Western Conference with a goal differential of -17. In addition to Canadian disappointment, the Toronto Maple Leafs have lost six straight games and seven of their last ten. The question is, why?
We’re not going to list all the things that have contributed to the Canucks’ nightmarish season, but if we had to pick a low point, it would probably be allowing seven third-period goals to the Islanders…at home…in a must-win game…that they led 3-0 after two periods.
On the other hand, the Leafs are still alive in the playoff race, but we had to include them in the poll because they’re on the verge of their third epic choke job in the last three seasons.
Even if they do manage to sneak in to the postseason, serious concerns will remain about a team that gives up more shots than any in the league and seems to wilt under the pressure of playing in Toronto.
Canada’s pride and excitement over hockey was persistent during Sochi, not so much in the NHL. Don’t forget that there are still three other Canadian teams without admirable records… Ottowa, Edmonton and Winnipeg.
For more on this story visit: Jason Brough, NBC Sports