If you’ve been out of the loop since the final horn sounded versus Columbus, here’s the latest in The Redhead and the Redheaded Stepchild (my title for the Highlander-esque saga involving Cory Schneider, Roberto Luongo, and the fact that there can only be one starting goalie): after yet another fantastic performance versus the Columbus Blue Jackets, Schneider has been declared the starter for his seventh straight game.
The decision caused many in Canuck nation to do a double take, especially with how quickly after the game the announcement came. Clearly, Alain Vigneault felt the decision to be something of a no-brainer, because he wasted very little time thinking about it.
But that’s because it likely didn’t take that much thought.
Surprising as it was, it really wasn’t all that surprising: While Schneider hasn’t registered a shutout for two straight games (is he sick?), he’s only gotten better over the course of this current hot streak. If the game in San Jose was enough to earn him a sixth straight start, the game versus Columbus — in which he was arguably better, stopping 47 shots — was undoubtedly going to earn him a seventh.
That in mind, nothing about our opinion on this situation has changed. Schneider (and frankly, the whole team) was on a hot streak after the Canucks’ road trip ended. He’s still on it, and as long as he continues to be, Alain Vigneault is going to ride the hot hand like a puppet full of Bengay. In short, the starting job is indeed Schneider’s to lose but, unless he maintains a goals against average below 1.00 for the rest of his tenure in Vancouver, losing it is pretty much a guarantee.
Unfortunately, while nothing has changed in regards to this situation, the media continues to badger Roberto Luongo about it, even though it has very little to do with him at this point.
(Granted, it’s never a bad idea to harass Funny Bob. The more you talk to him, the more likely he is to give you a tongue-in-cheek quote that can be spun wildly out of context, and his “We’re both number ones” is definitely that. Completely innocuous, but at worst, it’s the mildly delusional statement of a person only half-willing to admit he’s become a staple of the bench, what with the way he’s been stapled to the bench. Seriously, thrusting a recorder in his face is the NHL media equivalent of hitting a pinata. Eventually, he’s gonna spill something delicious.)
This really isn’t a hard situation to figure out, and yet the hemming and hawing shows no signs of coming to an end. It’s enough to make you wonder if Alain Vigneault decided to insert Mason Raymond into the lineup versus the Predators just so that the papers would have something else to talk about.Tags: controversy, Luongo, schneider