Spitballin’ on Kesler’s injury, Luongo zingers, and Sedin marine trivia

Spitballin’ (or Super Pass It To Bulis: All In, if you love adventurous acronymizing) is a feature that allows us to touch on a multitude of things really fast, because in the world of hockey, there are always lots of things to find and colour. Here are a few topics that deserve mention.

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Remembering Aaron Rome, as he returns to Vancouver a Star

Alain Vigneault may have always thought of Aaron Rome as a star, but he actually became one this past off-season when he signed in Dallas. Rome received a lot of love from the Canucks’ coach thanks to his safe and boring style of play. In many ways he was the ideal depth defenceman, who could be relied upon to keep things simple and prevent scoring chances, at both ends of the ice.

In Dallas, however, Rome is currently playing significant minutes for the Stars on their second pairing and on the penalty kill. At least, he is when he’s in the lineup. He missed 7 games near the beginning of the season with a groin injury and the flu, but has played well since returning. For Rome, signing in Dallas wasn’t just about the money, but about the chance to play a more significant role in a team’s top-four.

And now, he’s returning to Vancouver for the first time since signing with the Stars. We want to take the time to reminisce on Rome’s finest moments in his three seasons with the Vancouver Canucks. It’s probably not going to take very long.

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Every Goal, 2011-12: Aaron Rome

Aaron Rome was a divisive figure during his three seasons as a Vancouver Canuck. The depth defenceman didn’t do any one thing particularly well, save skipping pucks off the glass like he was throwing rocks at a lake on its side, so when he found himself in the lineup in place of the highly-toued, highly-paid, and costly to acquire Keith Ballard, people got upset. But, apart from the outrage over who he tended to replace, Rome was rarely noticeable in the Canucks’ lineup.

That is, apart from when he scored a goal. It happened five times in a Canucks’ uniform, and each one was met with surprise and amusement, like when a toddler does a somersault. Three of those goals took place during a brief hot streak last November, immediately after returning from a broken hand suffered in the preseason. It was must-see TV. While culturing a fabulous Movember duster, the defenceman suddenly looked like an offensive dynamo (and Wario). For a week, Rome was the man of the hour.

He’s gone now, having signed a three-year, $4.5 million contract with the Dallas Stars, but we’ll always have November. And also that one he scored in February. Here are all 4 goals Aaron Rome scored last season.

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Spitballin’ on Arniel hiring, departing free agents, and hipster Sedins

Spitballin’ (or Super Pass It To Bulis: All In, if you love adventurous acronymizing) is a feature that allows us to touch on a multitude of things really fast, because in the world of hockey, there are always lots of things to find and colour. Here are a few quick topics.

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I Watched This Game: Canucks at Minnesota Wild, March 19, 2012

Let us take heart. Tonight was not the worst Vancouver Canucks/Minnesota Wild game ever played. Admittedly, that’s like saying, “This isn’t the most awful Land Before Time sequel ever” or “I’ve seen worse Star Wars prequels,” but still, it’s a little perspective.

So there’s your silver lining, Canuck fans: as low as the entertainment value at the Xcel Energy Center was this evening, as much as this game was to the soul as Coke is to a molar, it could have been far worse: this game could have featured both Ducky the Dinosaur and Jar Jar Binks. Thankfully, it had neither, a fact with which I consoled myself while I watched this game.

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While it’s safe to say that Aaron Rome won’t continue scoring at this pace, don’t expect a Jeff Cowan-like perma-drought once this run begins to cool. Aaron Rome is going to continue to get points this season. Here are three reasons why.

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I’m Brendan Shanahan, the National Hockey League’s Senior Vice President of Player Safety. Friday night in Anaheim, an incident occurred during a game between the Vancouver Canucks and Anaheim Ducks. 11 minutes into the second period, Vancouver defenceman Aaron Rome delivered a completely legal hit to Anaheim winger Devante Smith-Pelly. He won’t be suspended because that would be stupid.

Okay, so Shanahan didn’t produce a video after reviewing Rome’s hit on Smith-Pelly, and reports indicate that he wasn’t entirely happy with the hit and believed the discipline issued during the game was sufficient for the offense. But I like to believe that he watched the video and said, “Seriously? The referees called that elbowing?”

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Aaron Rome’s teammates ruin his interview, as is tradition

Things are finally looking up for Aaron Rome, who’s had a rough time of it lately, but returned to the lineup Sunday in Chicago and contributed right away. He scored a pivotal goal in his first game back, putting himself a goal away from doubling his career-high single-season totals with plenty of time to get it done. Then, the big score earned him some rare camera time with Joey Kenward for Canucks Today!

That said, don’t get too excited: his teammates made sure to give him that familiar “ruined moment” feeling by hovering in the background of the shot for pretty much the entire interview.

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Like Neo in the Matrix, Nathan Horton wants his phone call. The Bruins forward is evidently upset that Aaron Rome texted him an apology rather than calling him on the phone. While this could easily be seen as sour grapes, particularly after Horton still won the Stanley Cup, I can understand wanting a slightly more personal apology. What I don’t understand is dragging it out into the open in the media.

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It’s tough to look fondly back on a season that ended in such disappointment (and destruction), but it would be a disservice to a year chock-a-block with great moments if we didn’t make the attempt. Truth is, apart from that unfortunate losing streak to close out the season — the one that gave Boston their first Stanley Cup in nearly four decades — almost everything went Vancouver’s way this year. In short, if you overlook that final flameout (rather than allowing it to overshadow everything else), the recent past is a pretty happy place.

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After another decisive road loss during a post season that has had its share of dizzying heights and now back-breaking lows (with all apologies to Mason Raymond), the members of good ship Canuck were all heard to declare they had once again turned the page and were only thinking about game 7.  At this time [...]

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So what kind of Canucks’ blog goes two days between posts with a Stanley Cup hanging in the balance?  Well, this one.  And for that we apologize.  But these are almost unprecedented times, and Friday’s game left us a little speechless.  And our weekend at Hockey Night in Canada’s “Play-On 4 on 4″ street hockey tourney had [...]

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Today the overlords at the NHL discipline department did the unprecedented.  Yes, in the Colin Campbell era, there was never this type of expediency and over-reaching. You must feel for Aaron Rome, a player with a clean record and a player who was in interim discipline chief Mike Murphy’s words, involved in a “typical hockey [...]

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