Loui Eriksson fails to bounce back
Loui Eriksson failing to live up to his contract while playing for the Canucks has been an ongoing disappointment in Vancouver so it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that the 34-year-old winger was yet again, a big let down to the fans of BC’s NHL hockey team. Hard to imagine it after three lousy seasons with the Canucks, but 2019-20 was only the beginning to the second half of Eriksson’s six-year pact with Vancouver worth $36 million USD.
With two additions to the top-six and more players brought in during the summer, it was expected by many that Eriksson was destined for the farm team. Somehow, someway, Eriksson’s defensive abilities were enough to keep him in the big leagues labelling him the 13th forward. Injuries came knocking eventually and Eriksson found his way into the line up mostly playing on the second line as part of a shutdown line with Bo Horvat.
This is where Eriksson found most of his little success. He didn’t produce offence, but his defensive skills were still sharp and he managed to be a part of an at times half-decent insurance line. Alongside the captain his instincts somehow kept him involved and he scored 13 points in 49 games.
For a $6 million dollar annual fee, that’s just not good enough. Eriksson all season long was the 13th forward that for whatever reason, Jim Benning refused to send down. But the season wore on and it became more clear that younger, hungrier players were going to outwork him for a spot on the opening lineup when the games truly matter.
Playoffs were always the goal for the Canucks this season. As it stands now, Vancouver is firmly a bubble team uncertain where exactly they sit in the COVID-19 effected playoff bubble. However, if any single one of these three disappointments didn’t happen, the Canucks may have locked down a playoff spot for good.