Originally posted on NorthWest Sports Beat  |  Last updated 7/18/13
Alarmist headline, but here me out! Next year is the first year of re-alignment where the Canucks are moved out of the cozy Northwest Division and the ragtag group of teams that have failed to make the playoffs for years are plucked in a brand new as-of-yet unnamed division that for this article’s sake, we’ll call the Pacific*. The Albertan teams remain but Colorado and Minnesota are swapped for the three Californian squads and Phoenix. Of those, four will make the playoffs. Let’s throw Calgary out of the mix right away, cause whatever, and look at the six remaining teams. LA Kings Los Angeles is Los Angeles, winners of six playoff rounds the past two years and your 2012 Stanley Cup champions. They’re essentially the same team from these years prior, save for a Jonathan Bernier trade and a Dan Carcillo acquisition. Still, those are cosmetic changes. Does Torts have what it takes to guide the Nucks to the Playoffs? Your Kopitar/Richards/Carter/Doughty/Quick core remains, and that mak...
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