Feb 19, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane (88) scores a goal against Vancouver Canucks goalie Cory Schneider (35) during the shootout at the United Center. The Chicago Blackhawks beat the Vancouver Canucks 4-3 in the shootout. The Blackhawks tied an NHL record for scoring at least one point in 16 consecutive games to open a season. Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

Reality Check: Vancouver Canucks Versus the Western Conference

As we watch this shortened season play out in this ice it brings to mind the highly competitive National Hockey League of this era. With the new collective bargaining agreement in place, teams will have a difficult time putting truly dominant products on the ice.

With one look around the Western Conference, I see very few “gimmies.” Every game is vitally important to success this season. With so many three point games, there will be a log jam to get into the playoffs. The product the Vancouver Canucks have on the ice today is not good enough to take on powerhouse clubs like Chicago Blackhawks, San Jose Sharks, or Anaheim Ducks. Looking beyond these teams, they have to worry about the Stanley Cup Champions—the Los Angeles Kings.

It matters little who the Canucks end up facing in the playoffs—assuming they make it—because the Canucks will be in tough against their opposition regardless. I truly love the group here, but with the injuries and uncertain play of key members of the team, any fan has to have their doubts this season.

Having two skilled goalies in Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider with proven track records, the Canucks have the parts to make a deal and add depth at the forward and defence positions. This will make the team that much better and deeper.

It might be difficult moving Luongo since no trade offer may appear “fair,” but tying up over $9 million to two goaltenders when only one can play is not beneficial at all.

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