I Watched This Game: Canucks at Edmonton Oilers, February 4, 2013

There’s nothing worse than leading a hockey game by two goals (save perhaps trailing by seven, and even then, it’s a toss-up). As we know by now, opening up a two-goal lead is like reciting a passage from the Book of the Dead. It basically summons ill fortune. The Canucks have demonstrated this principle several times already this season, and they did so again on Monday night. The difference? This time, they were the team clawing their way back.

But there was another difference between this game and the recent two-goal collapses we’ve seen recently: this one ended in overtime, rather than the shootout. And speaking of things we’d never seen before, the game-winning goal was scored by none other than Chris Tanev, who will now haunt the Oilers like something out of Edgar Allan Poe. (Quoth the raven: Tanevermore.) I watched this game.

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Breakdowning Alex Edler’s 1-0 goal versus the Chicago Blackhawks

With the Chicago Blackhawks coming to town on Friday night, many had their fingers crossed that the Canucks would exact some sort of revenge for the concussion Duncan Keith caused Daniel Sedin when he droves an elbow into the winger’s face last season. Obviously, no one was calling for a Canuck to skate up behind Keith, punch him in the back of the head, then ride him to the ice (we’re not so into that anymore), but most were hoping someone would, at the very least, staple him to the boards.

That proved easier said than done. Keith is shiftier than the eyes of a dog that’s up to no good, and he evaded attempts to destroy him all night. Incredibly, the best lick any Canuck put on him was dished out by Henrik Sedin. But that wasn’t the only time that Henrik got the best of Keith. The two also came together on Alex Edler’s first period-goal, and Henrik came away from that exchange the victor as well.

That’s just one of many things you may have missed on the play while you marvelled at Zack Kassian’s pass. So let’s break it down.

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‘Robert’ Luongo could get traded ‘to’ Vancouver, according to Sports Illustrated

For a few brief, merciful days, all the talk of a Roberto Luongo trade in the media had been replaced by talk of a goalie controversy in Vancouver. We complained about the hype, questioned what would actually constitute a goalie controversy, and scoffed at how Alain Vigneault giving a world-class goaltender consecutive starts while he’s on a hot streak could even be called controversial.

But really, it was a relief.

For once, we could stop the endless speculation about potential Luongo trade destinations, returns, and whether he would even get traded at all. Instead, we could focus on a rather pleasant problem: which of the Canucks’ two fantastic goaltenders should start each game?

Unfortunately, it couldn’t last. Eventually the rumour mill would start up again; this time around, it was kicked into gear by a visit by Mike Gillis and Laurence Gilman to the Verizon Center for a game between the Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins. This, of course, immediately led to speculation from every corner of the media landscape that the Canucks were working on a trade with the Capitals, with Luongo the centrepiece. That included Sports Illustrated, who need to pay closer attention to their photo captions.

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