3 Canucks With The Most To Prove In 2023-24

The Vancouver Canucks had a disappointing season in 2022-23 and a horrible start they couldn't recover from. The team made some big changes over the course of the season and to this point, but there are three familiar faces that will be the ones with the most to prove in 2023-24.

Nils Hoglander

Nils Hoglander is going into his fourth season in the NHL and over the course of the first three seasons, has played a lower percentage of the team's games and has seen his ice time reduced. He started off hot in his rookie year, playing every game, but got into just 25 last season, spending the majority of the year in the AHL. He signed a new contract after his entry-level deal expired and is no longer waiver exempt, meaning he has to stick with the Canucks or the team risks losing him on waivers, which will happen. After just three goals and nine points last season, he needs to step up and produce like he did in his rookie season or just turn the tides.

Thatcher Demko

Like the majority of the Canucks, Thatcher Demko's start to last season was one that he'd like to forget, He went winless in his first six games and won one of his first 11. An injury then kept him out for a while and he returned on a mission, putting up much better numbers and looking like the goalie the Canucks know. Seeing how 2022-23 was a tale of two stories for Demko and even the Canucks, he will need to be much more consistent if the team wants to get back into the playoffs. He's a very good goalie, but can he show it?

Andrei Kuzmenko

The Canucks were the lucky team to win over Andrei Kuzmenko when he decided to sign a one year entry-level deal last season with them. He immediately fit in very nicely and was one of the bright spots for the team throughout the down season. Instead of trading him, the Canucks kept him around, signing him to a lucrative two-year deal. Kuzmenko put up 39 goals and 74 points, but had an insane shooting percentage of 27.3. That is unlikely to be replicated, but can his offensive production stay relatively the same and make the investment worth it?

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