Get used to mediocrity

GUTS MCTAVISH -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:54 AM ET

In the 2006-07 season, the Vancouver Canucks finished with a franchise-best 105 points finishing 23 games above 500, which, of course, led to a division title. Make no mistake, this had everything to do with the arrival of Roberto Luongo and Alain Vigneault's boring defence-first style.

The one stat from that season Which really sticks out for me is the fact the Canucks finished an astonishing 34 points ahead of the Edmonton Oilers and the Chicago Black Hawks and a ridiculous 38 points ahead of the Phoenix Coyotes. Since then, just one 82-game NHL season has passed and The Hockey News is now picking the Oilers, the Hawks and the Coyotes to finish ahead of Vancouver.

How good have these teams become in just one season? Or is it more wise to say all three teams have gotten considerably better due to some patient youth-building via the draft?

Even so, this should not be enough to make up a combined 106 points in one year on the Canucks.

To me, it's fairly obvious: As the other clubs rocket north, the Canucks have been silently plummeting south. I say silently because there is still a ton of optimism around this town. Has Tony Robbins addressed this team's fan base and I didn't hear about it?

Look, the Canucks had a few years over the past decade where we all thought they had a legitimate Cup shot. Judging by the pure talent on this year's team and last year's 11th place squad, I no longer see that window of opportunity as open or even cracked a bit.

I see it as boarded shut like they're waiting for Hurricane Ike to arrive. Every team has to accept at some point they are on the decline. The smart men managing such a team are paid well to see it before any of us do.

Question: Would you be willing to watch losing hockey for a few years while the Canucks reload with some young talent?


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