By Shane Darrow on April 2, 2014
The Vancouver Canucks are currently six points out of the playoffs, but they shouldn't be throwing in the towel quite yet. Even for a disseminated team, there is still enough talent on the roster to find themselves playing postseason hockey. Here's five ways the Canucks could find themselves playing hockey in the Spring.
If the Canucks want any chance at making the playoffs, they need to hope that both the Phoenix Coyotes and Dallas Stars end the season on poor notes. Both teams are currently six points ahead of the Canucks, which doesn't put the ball in Vancouver's court, so all roads to the playoffs go through Phoenix and Dallas.
With only 10 possible points up for grabs in the Canucks' final five games, they have to win out. Four of their remaining five games are at home, which is a plus, but their next three games are against the Los Angeles Kings, Anaheim Ducks and Colorado Avalanche – who have a combined record of 141-65-20 – making their road a bit more difficult.
With the goaltending saga in Vancouver finally put to rest, the Canucks have no choice but to rely on Eddie Lack. In order for the Canucks to win out, which is exactly what they have to do, Lack is going to have to stand on his head in between the pipes. These last five games will really prove what Lack is made of.
There's been no shortage of hoopla surrounding John Tortorella this season, but if there was ever a time for the Canucks to believe in their head coach, it's now. He's a stern guy who isn't afraid to visibly show his emotions on the bench, but he's also a guy who knows how to win hockey games.
Henrik Sedin has missed the last few games with a lower-body injury and the Canucks are never the same team without him in the lineup. Henrik returned to practice on Wednesday and will be desperately needed if the Canucks want any shot at playing playoff hockey.
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