For the last couple of days, and continuing today, I have been and will be looking at each team in the NHL and identifying a couple of players in particular that fit into one of two categories based on the once popular kids game, Chutes and Ladders. The players in the “chutes” category will be players who exceeded expectations last season, and will have a difficult time avoiding a slide in the coming season. The “ladder” category will consist of players who are ready to climb a level in their play and step up a notch. Feel free to brows back to see previous teams, and look for the last few teams today.
Chutes: David Booth – With Mason Raymond not returning due to Salary Cap restrictions, the door is open wide for the talented power forward to seize the opportunity to be in the Canucks’ top 6. However, the health questions continue to swirl around Booth who has played only 1 full season in his career and missed 3/4 of the shortened 2013 season.
Ladders: Roberto Luongo – Now that the circus surrounding the Canucks crease has subsided (mostly), Luongo can get back to stopping pucks. A thing that people forget just how good he is at doing. If he can put the trade talk and controversy behind him, he could easily return to Vezina consideration and lead Canada to Olympic Gold once again.