Last night, the Vancouver Canucks were officially eliminated from postseason contention.
With the lowest wild-card seed in the west sitting at 85 points and their best possible outcome being 85 points, a team that has long been considered unofficially eliminated got the final nail in their coffin last night. This is the second season in a row that the Canucks have missed the postseason, and there is no army of prospects waiting in the winds.
In fact, they were eliminated slightly earlier this year.
So, what next?
Canucks fans are split on how to feel after the official elimination of their team, some feeling that this was necessary to push the team into rebuild mode. That clearly wasn’t the direction of the front office in the offseason, as our favourite Twitter bot perfectly sums up the Canucks’ strategy going into this season.
So, is this the final push for the Canucks to start thinking further in the future? Jim Benning’s comments yesterday on TSN Radio certainly suggest so.
Your favourite team missing the playoffs is never a time to cheer, but if it encourages more positivity in the near future, we're sure many fanbases would take that. Even lucky, just squeaking into the playoffs type runs can be fun, but they might hurt your team in the long run if the team was never truly a contender in the first place.
Taking all of this in, Canucks fans aren’t sure how to feel. Sad about the current state of their team or excited about a new direction for the future.
This offseason will be an especially interesting one with the addition of the expansion draft, so we will no doubt see a more definitive direction from the Canucks as moves start to be made.