Green: Canucks 'not going to hide' from rough 2020-21 season

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The Vancouver Canucks struggled both on and off the ice last season en route to a last-place finish in the North Division, and head coach Travis Green wants to tackle his team's issues head-on.

"We were on the right road going into the bubble year and we've been taking steps, but last year was tough. We're not going to hide from that. We didn't have a very good season, and I expect a bounce-back year," Green said, according to The Province's Ben Kuzma.

"This is the most excited I've been coming into a season as a coach," he added.

The scariest part of the Canucks' 2020-21 campaign came via a brutal bout with COVID-19 throughout March and April that forced the rescheduling of several games. Now, Green is looking forward to a return to semi-normalcy with training camp set to kick off Sept. 23.

"Getting back to regular hockey - or as close as we can be - with a full camp and fans in the building and the changes we've made along with the evolution of our young group, I expect them to be better," he said.

A makeover was needed after the Canucks gave up the sixth-most goals in the NHL. Among the new additions for Vancouver are forwards Conor Garland and Jason Dickinson, defensemen Tucker Poolman, Luke Schenn, and Oliver Ekman-Larsson, as well as goaltender Jaroslav Halak. Additionally, top prospect Vasili Podkolzin looks primed to make a splash this season.

"We've added some different players, but after the season we had, we have to be better in all areas of our game - defensively and offensively," Green said. "I don't think there's any team that goes into training camp without concerns. Winning isn't easy. A lot of teams expect to make the playoffs, but you can't get ahead of yourself."

Before the regular season begins, the Canucks have major questions to answer regarding new deals for restricted free agents Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes.

"We understand that sometimes these contracts take a little while and probably longer than the player or team wants," Green said. "I'm confident they'll get things sorted out and be in camp."

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Green: Canucks 'not going to hide' from rough 2020-21 season
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