Canucks Inject Speed, But For How Long?

The Vancouver Canucks’ roster is set, and yes, Roberto Luongo did make the team. Okay, that wasn’t funny. There weren’t too many surprises coming out of camp, but the Canucks did take a chance on two young, talented speedsters in an attempt to jump start what was a lacklustre offence last season.

Ryan ShannonFor two players that have flown under the radar for most of their amateur and professional careers, there is an awful lot of hype around the newest additions to the Canucks, but all with good reason.

Ryan Shannon and Mason Raymond bring speed and a skilled element that the Canucks did not address during the summer months, the only problem is that both Raymond and Shannon are inexperienced at the NHL level. Shannon did win a Stanley Cup with the Anaheim Ducks but was stuck on the fourth line most nights and was not able to play his true style of hockey. Raymond has not competed in an NHL regular season game, and less than eight months ago, he was still playing college hockey for the University of Minnesota-Duluth.

Now the two proved through the exhibition season that they deserved to at least start the season with the Canucks. Good for head coach Alain Vigneault to give these guys a shot on opening night.

Mason RaymondBut how long with this experiment last? Vigneault has indicated in his stint with the Canucks to date that playing time – and in cases as to whether or not players stay in Vancouver or head to Manitoba – will be determined by production. No production means no playing time, or worse, a trip to the AHL Manitoba Moose.

So, having said that, both Raymond and Shannon must produce. Not only to help the team win, which in Vancouver is a must and even then it doesn’t seem good enough, but to stay in the NHL. No pressure at all. If one thing helps, it is that the two talented speeders will be given an opportunity to play with Markus Naslund and the Sedin twins. Those stars can make other players around them better, but along with playing with better forwards comes more pressure to produce every night against the opposition’s best.

Again, no pressure.

Vancouver Canucks Roster Cuts

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One Response

  1. […] Hard Fought Spot Posted on October 2, 2007 by thesportscorner In addition to surprise moves in Shannon and Raymond staying, defencemen Nathan McIver also passed the […]

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