Burrows, Canucks Struggle to Score

When Alex Burrows has only three assists in 23 games, you know there is something going on with the Canucks’ offence. One of the Canucks’ top forwards, Burrows’ three assists come from two games this season, two in a 4-2 win over the San Jose Sharks on November 7th and the third in a 2-1 overtime loss to the Sharks on November 14th.

Burrows missed most of October with an foot injury, played in November, and then missed most of December and the first half of January with a broken jaw. It has been six games since he returned from his jaw injury, and he has yet to find the back of the net.

Upon his return Burrows played on the top line with the Sedin twins, but with Henrik now injured, the lines have been shuffled. On Wednesday night against the Chicago Blackhawks Burrows started on the top line with Daniel Sedin and Jordan Schroeder and finished the night on the third line with Mike Richardson and David Booth. He is still on the top powerplay unit, has hit a post or two and is in all the right positions to score. For some reason, it just is not happening.

The last time Burrows had a goal drought this long was in 2006-07, his first full season with the Canucks in which he scored three goals (and had six assists) in 81 games. Maybe it’s because of the injuries. Maybe it’s because of the Sedins’ lack of production. Burrows refuses to use things like his injuries as excuses however; he is, after all, well known for his tenacity and work ethic, which is undoubtedly got him from three goals in 81 games in 2006-07 to 35 in 82 in 2009-10.

“No, I just try to do a little extra after practice and after the morning skate, keep shooting more pucks and feeling comfortable hitting spots. Then, hopefully, things are going to happen. I’ve seen a lot of guys go through droughts. You just have to stay positive and make sure you do all the right things,” he told The Vancouver Sun.

“I had one off the post against Edmonton, one off the bar against Phoenix and that’s not the jaw protector (which he has been wearing since his return on January 18th). That’s just the way it goes sometimes. You just have to believe it’s going to go in. At the end of the day, that’s all you can do.”

Burrows needs to score, as do the Sedins, Ryan Kesler, and virtually every player on the team. The Sedins currently lead the Canucks with 40 points each; Kesler is next with 34. Compared to other teams, like Chicago, who the Canucks played on Wednesday and currently have five players with over 45 points each, the Canucks are underachieving and disappointing in terms of offence.
The Canucks have a five game road trip before the start of the Olympics, playing Winnipeg, Detroit, Boston, Montreal and Toronto.

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