After a week of riding the craziest media storm to surround the Canucks since a certain really bad thing that happened that I just don't even want to mention my name, they can finally get out from under the media spotlight and play some hockey against the Penguins. Crap. Let's face it, the world is turning it's attention to Vancouver now so we might as well get used to it. And it is a big thing when Sidney Crosby and the Pens come to town. Not going to mention what a massive failure on the part of the NHL it is that it's Crosby's 2nd trip here in his career. Same can be said for Alex Ovechkin of course, and we remember the crazy hype that rolled in with him when the Caps came to town. Seems that while people are excited about seeing Sid The Kid, it seems like it's not as big a deal as the entrance of Alexander the Great. Is that fair? More after the jump...
One thing is for sure, Oveckin's status as a superstar is much more prominent than it was when he first came to GM Place. The same can be said for Crosby though, something about being the Captain that raises that fabled silver cup thingy over your head that can do it for one's career. Last time Crosby was in town, he was booed when he touched the puck, and the place went nuts when Luongo stopped him in the shootout. This time I think you'll see a much more cordial response, as well as an army of small, Crosby jersey attired kids. With Crosby expected to play a leading role next month with Team Canada, and also having matured somewhat over the years, I bet he is treated more like Ovechkin and less like Pronger. Make sure and check out the pregame goodness thread, and come back for the game thread as well.
Some other articles to check out to get you up to date
All in all it should be a great night, with two Hart trophy candidates going head to head, 2 of Team Canada's goalies (maybe) as well as the return of Matt Cooke. And did you hear about Alex Burrows? 17 points in a 7 game streak. Just sayin'...
A little syrup on those pancakes?
As Canucks fans we often keep a close eye on the goings on of the Manitoba Moose. The recent swing into Abbotsford to take on the Heat was a huge success, both games sold out and a sweep for the baby 'Nucks. But the other farm team, the ECHL's Victoria Salmon Kings often get forgotten. After last night however, the hockey world is buzzing over a goal against the Bakersfield Condors (thanks Missy!) that was TSN's Highlight Of The Night, that Sportscenter's Dan O'Toole called "maybe the best goal you'll ever see":
Quiet night in the NHL last night with just two games. Vesa Toskala's back to being the goat, one night after shutting out the Flyers, Ovie and the Caps tore him a new one. 6-1 Capitals, Ovechkin with a goal and a career high 4 assists. That 5 point night vaulted him past Sidney Crosby and Joe Thornton into 2nd place in scoring, 2 behind Henrik Sedin. And once again, the Calgary Flames were booed off the ice at the Saddledome, a late foal from Patrik Hornqvist gave the Nashville Predators a 1-0 win. Jarome Iginla is pointless in 6 games now, as the Flames continue to struggle offensively. What will come first, a trade or a complete collapse in the standings? Or both?
After a week of negativity and 3 straight losses, you can bet the Canucks will be eager to put that all behind them tonight. They always seem to play their best hockey against some of the league's elite and tonight will be no exception. Forget about lasers, vindictive officials, and guys who are paid to fight doing their jobs. Tonight it's all about hockey, thank god. There's rumblings that Canucks fans will be bringing white towels as a message to Campbell & Bettman. I hope so. It's completely appropriate given the original reason towel power was born, and would be a huge inspiration to the boys.