Iain McIntyre, one of the best and fairest Canucks observers finally picks up on the idea. We've seen for several seasons now how effective Kesler can be in so many ways but how lacking he is as a playmaker and honestly, as a reliable scorer, especially in the playoffs. McIntyre points out that Kelser has exactly 10 goals in 53 playoff games, not such a small sample size any more, and 5 of those goals came in one series against Nashville last year.

You have to give up something to get something. And this team is completely stagnant, has been for a long time. Kesler is an awesome defensive C but we need more than that.

Problem is, it seems that Gillis is afraid to make any move that isn't a reclamation moneyball move.

... trading their core player is not as unthinkable as it once seemed, given the season Kesler had, a no-trade clause in his contract that kicks in before next season, and the potential benefits to the Canucks of a multi-player windfall and the renewal of their image.

That is already underway with the seismic shift in the goal crease, as longtime incumbent Roberto Luongo unselfishly declared Tuesday he won't stand in the way of the Canucks' promoting backup Cory Schneider. Even halfway through this season, the idea of trading Luongo and keeping Schneider was outrageous.

The Philadelphia Flyers stunned the National Hockey League last June when they traded thought-to-be-untouchable captain Mike Richards to the Los Angeles Kings for Brayden Schenn and Wayne Simmonds.

Then Simmonds outscored Richards this season while the 20-year-old Schenn has done nothing to dissuade believers that he, too, will become an impact centre in the NHL. To be fair, it hasn't worked out so badly for Richards, either, despite his meagre first year in Los Angeles, where the Kings are so smitten with him they can't wait to dump Dustin Brown and make the ex-Flyer captain.
... his quiet series against the Kings did little to spruce up a playoff resume that shows just 10 goals in 53 games. Half of those came in a five-day span during Kesler's spectacular second-round playoff series last year against the Nashville Predators.

General manager Mike Gillis, exasperated by the Canucks' reputation for diving and whining, may well consider Kesler's playoff returns when he decides how best to change his team.

Luongo and Kesler have been cornerstones so long, trading those two alone would transform the Canucks.