Canucks preview: Rankings, predictions, playoff chances and more

The Canucks have a captivating young wave of talent, including reigning All-Star Game MVP Brock Boeser. Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images

With the 2018-19 season fast approaching, we're running snapshots of all 31 NHL teams, including point total projections, positional previews, best- and worst-case scenarios and more.

It's the first season without the Sedin Twins for the Vancouver Canucks. Where should expectations be set?

How they finished in 2017-18: 31-40-11 (73 points), finished 26th in the NHL, 7th in the Pacific Division

The final seasons for Henrik and Daniel Sedin saw them cede top-line minutes to the future of the Canucks: Bo Horvat, 22, and rookie Brock Boeser, 20. Alas, the future was not now. Injuries to both players led to truncated, but impressive, seasons as the Canucks finished outside of the playoffs for a third straight campaign, the first under coach Travis Green.

Over/under projected point total (per the Westgate Las Vegas Superbook): 77.5

Best-case scenario: Boeser, Horvat and Elias Pettersson lead an insurgent Canucks team to the playoff bubble.

Worst-case scenario: Pettersson makes the team out of training camp, then struggles on a hapless Vancouver team that has some top-end talent but lacks necessary depth. Goaltending remains uninspiring. Second-year coach Green can't lift his group out of the muck; there's a leadership void without the Brothers Sedin.

Forward overview: Horvat and Boeser had instant chemistry, with the former scoring 22 goals in 64 games and the latter scoring an impressive 29 goals in 62 games. Who skates with them? Sven Baertschi, Brendan Leipsic and Nikolay Goldobin all might get a look. Loui Eriksson, whose offensive output has fallen off a cliff in two seasons with Vancouver, could skate with brilliant young rookie Pettersson. Veterans Markus Granlund and Sam Gagner are in the scoring mix. Among the grunts are Brandon Sutte, Tyler Motte and the team's two fourth-liners they inked to multiyear free-agent contracts, Antoine Roussel and Jay Beagle. NHL rank: 31st

Defense overview: Alexander Edler enters the final year of his contract as the team's defensive workhorse (24:17 time on ice, on average). Michael Del Zotto is also a UFA next summer. Chris Tanev has two seasons left and some trade protection but could draw trade deadline interest. Also in the mix are Erik Gudbranson, Troy Stecher, Ben Hutton and Derrick Pouliot. NHL rank: 28th

Goalie overview: Jacob Markstrom and Anders Nilsson will hold down the crease together, with Markstrom the better goalie of the two. But they're just keeping it warm until 22-year-old Thatcher Demko is ready to inherit it. NHL rank: 30th

Special teams: The Canucks were ninth, at 21.4 percent on the power play last season, but that was with Sedin magic. They were 21st on the penalty kill at 78.3 percent.

Pipeline overview: The Canucks boast depth in their prospect pool, but it's also remarkable how many of those players are high-end talents. Pettersson and Quinn Hughes are potential cornerstone players for the post-Sedin Canucks, but then there's also some high-end upside in the second tier of their system. Read more -- Chris Peters

Fantasy nugget: If it wasn't for a season-ending back injury, Boeser would have wrapped up his first full NHL campaign with approximately 70 points, good for a solid second place behind Mathew Barzal in rookie scoring. Fortunately, months later, he reportedly feels "really good" heading into 2018-19. While the immediate complete picture might not be a pretty one for the rebuilding Canucks, the top duo of Boeser and Horvat will still put up impressive individual scoring numbers, as long as they remain healthy. With Daniel Sedin and Henrik Sedin off enjoying retirement, it's their team now. Read more -- Victoria Matiash

Coach on the hot seat? Green was impressive in his first year, making some bold choices despite this being his first gig (like reducing the Sedins' ice time). He's going to grow with this group.

Bold prediction: Boeser snipes 40 goals.