That’s it: now I’m mad. Up until now, I’ve been remarkably blasé about the lockout. I mean, it’s upsetting that the games have been cancelled, but I’ve been filling my time with Abbotsford Heat games, more time spent with my family, and the baseball playoffs. As long as the entire season isn’t cancelled, I told myself, I could live with it. But now? Now the lockout has taken away Sami Salo. And that’s just too much to handle. While I was fine with Salo signing with the Lightningfrom a rational perspective, from an emotional perspective, it was a kick in the teeth. Salo, with his humble attitude and continual persistence in coming back from injury after injury, was one of my favourite Canucks of the last decade. I didn’t get to see his return to Vancouver, because I didn’t watch this game.
Canucks 0 – 0 Lightning
I have no highlights from the game that didn’t occur, but I do have this video of magician Matt Esschen at the age of 15 doing a handkerchief illusion. While his skill with prestidigitation is only slightly above-average, his dry banter is brilliant.
Another odd thing: Manny Malhotra scored a goal in both games.
Also odd: Keith Ballard picked up a point in each game, a goal in one and an assist in the other.
Less odd, but still notable: Cory Schneider got the start in both of those games as well.
Malhotra has a total of 18 goals over the last two seasons. Ballard has just 14 points in that time. Schneider has given up 4 or more goals only 10 times in the past two seasons. For all three of those things to occur in games against the Lightning, who the Canucks face just once per season, is pretty unlikely.
This, of course, means that we were deprived of a high-scoring, tension-filled 5-4 game decided beyond regulation, with a goal by Malhotra and a point by Ballard. Looking back at the box scores, Martin St. Louis would have had 2 assists in last night’s game, Steven Stamkos would have had a multi-point night, and only half of Vincent Lecavalier would have played. So, basically the same as every other Lightning game.
After a win over the Detroit Red Wings, the Canucks are sitting in second in the Pacific and boast the division's best goal differential. That said, a big part of that goal differential comes from the Canucks' league-leading 10 empty net goals. […]