Last night’s induction of Alex Burrows into the Ring of Honour proved about as special a moment as a preplanned ceremony can be – thanks in no small part to the inspirational words of Burrows himself and the follow through on those words by Antoine Roussel.
Antoine Roussel paying tribute to Alex Burrows with the emotionally-satisfying goal.
Reminiscent of Burrows scoring two right after the Luc Bourdon memorial. Or Burrows slaying the dragon. Or Burrows scoring in the shootout in what we thought was his last game with the #Canucks.
— Stephan Roget (@StephanRoget) December 4, 2019
One of the most beloved Canucks of the modern era, Burrows was an easy choice for the franchise’s highest honour short of jersey retirement – but the next entry into the Ring of Honour won’t be such an obvious pick.
There are plenty of candidates waiting in the wings of Canucks’ history – but there’s not another #DragonSlayer in the bunch. In fact, many of them have significant blemishes on their record – Todd Bertuzzi’s assault on Steve Moore, Roberto Luongo’s cap recapture debacle, and Ryan Kesler’s trade demand – that prevent them from being slam dunks in the same vein as Burrows.
This raises the question of whether the Canucks should take the time to name anyone else from their past to the Ring of Honour – or whether they should instead wait for someone from the current roster, like Alex Edler, to retire before adding another panel.
And so, that’s exactly what we’re going to ask you this week:
What would you do with the next entry into the Ring of Honour?
Last week, we asked:
What would you do with Nikolay Goldobin’s return to the lineup? Where would you play him?
Strangely enough, no one answered with “Play him for eight minutes in one game and then consign him to the pressbox” – though a couple of the answers definitely leaned in that direction.
Seeing that this will be one of the last good opportunity for Goldy in this organization, I would like to see him given a proper chance with Miller and Pettersson. I believe that Goldy has the speed and skill to keep up with these 2 players and they in turn have the defensive awareness to cover up for his mistakes. It will allow us to move Boeser onto a line with Horvat, a pairing with established chemistry. This will give us two dangerous lines which will make it that much harder to match up against. Reunite Boeser and Pettersson on PP1 and find a spot for Goldobin on PP2. For god’s sake, do not plug him in a bottom-six role and hope that he has an impact. Give him a good ten games without fear of him getting benched so that he doesn’t start over thinking it. I think that a lot of Goldy’s shooting percentage problem last year was due to squeezing the stick and second-guessing himself, instead of just letting his natural instincts take over.
Unfortunately, this scenario is unlikely with this coach, since his job is on the line should the team miss the playoffs this year. Personally, I think that this could be a watershed moment for Green, much like how AV saved his job by putting Burrows with the twins.
I would try him for 60 minutes in net.
(Winner of the author’s weekly award for eloquence)
Goldy’s return to Vancouver is a non-event, unfortunately. It’s time to finally turn the page on him.
Nikolay Goldobin absolutely must be played in the top-six, or else there’s really no point in having him on the roster. In theory, he’d also be a fit on some sort of third scoring line – but not one featuring Adam Gaudette and Jake Virtanen, who each have defensive issues of their own to work out. As we all know by now, Goldobin needs defensively responsible and offensively capable linemates to bring out the best in his game – and that can only be found in the top-six of the Canucks.
Both Elias Pettersson and Bo Horvat are the exact sort of center that Goldobin could greatly benefit from playing alongside – and indeed, he’s had past success with the both of them. This author would go as far as to say that Goldobin’s only real chance to succeed is if he finds himself spending significant time on a line with either Pettersson or Hovat – but what’s best for Goldobin isn’t necessarily best for the team.
Sure, Goldobin could probably put up some points lining up with Pettersson and Brock Boeser – but would he really be contributing more to their production than JT Miller already is? There’s an argument to be made about the value in placing Miller elsewhere in the lineup, but keeping the Lotto Line intact is still probably the most effective move.
Horvat, on the other hand, has struggled to find consistent chemistry with any winger in particular – and so there’s really no reason not to at least try Goldobin on his wing one more time. The two have worked well together before in limited stints, and something is needed to get Horvat’s game back on its best track. With that being said, Goldobin’s presence on Horvat’s wing would necessitate a major reduction in Horvat’s minutes.
At the end of the day, Goldobin might not have a long-term spot on this edition of the Canucks’ roster – but only because the team finally has an abundance of better options available. It’s not the worst problem to have.