Farewell to a fan favourite: Salo signs with Tampa Bay

Sami Salo has been one of the best Canucks defencemen for a full decade. He joined the Canucks in 2002 in a trade with the Senators for Peter Schaeffer. While he battled injuries and never played a full 82-game regular season, he was a steady, reliable presence with a howitzer of a slap shot, who made the team better when he was in the lineup. He was also a humble guy with a great sense of humour and incredible character. In coming back from injuries that would have ended the career of a lesser man, he was an inspiration to his teammates and his fans.

Salo was one of my favourite players and he just signed a two-year contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning. He won’t be retiring a Canuck.

And it’s okay.

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Spitballin’ on sweeping Kings, Kesler’s shoulder, and Skittle Burrows

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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Following a tough loss to the Sharks on Friday, the Canucks played this game like they had a lot to prove. After giving up 5 goals on their first five penalty kills in the series, they made sure to take five straight penalties just to prove that they could kill them. Having struggled on 5-on-3 powerplays all season and failing to score on two on Friday, they slyly goaded the Sharks into three such situations just to prove that they could take advantage of them. And finally, to avoid any accusations that they were only winning because the Sharks were choking in the third period, they wanted to prove that they could win a game despite being outscored in the final frame. I, too, had something to prove: could I watch this game? Yes. Yes, I could. It wasn’t that difficult. I’m not even sure why I questioned myself. I watched this game.

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