Welp, the Canucks did something last night we haven't seen much of over the past couple seasons: they blew a lead. At least, it doesn't feel like we've seen it very often. Usually the Canucks are the ones pulling off the comebacks, but last night it was the Hurricanes, the worst team in the Eastern Conference (well, technically second worst after this game). Yup, Vancouver has dropped back-to-back games to the two worst teams in the league. And the Schneider-Man sequel? Well, I don't want to say he "bombed at the box office" — he made some big saves in the first period in particular — but he didn't exactly set any records either.
On the bright side, Mason Raymond was excellent last night. Anyone else surprised at how comfortable he's looked since coming back from a very serious back injury? Kesler took much longer to get acclimated after a far less serious injury. He look advantage of his promotion to the Sedin-Burrows line and would have had an assist on what should have been the game-tying goal off the stick of Keith Ballard.
Vancouver Canucks news:
- On another positive note, Henrik Sedin notched his 700th point of his career last night, moving that much closer to Markus Naslund and Trevor Linden on the Canucks all-time scoring list. He also cracked the top 10 for all-time Swedes, and is the 4th youngest to hit 700 behind Mats Sundin, Peter Forsberg and Tomas Sandstrom. [Canucks.com recap]
- Not surprisingly, Dave Bolland recanted the insults he made towards the Sedins the other night. Also not surprisingly, the apology sounds about as heartfelt and sincere as his insults were original. [TSN]
- The Canucks were paid a visit by the Ghost of Awful Signings Past yesterday. Mark Messier still thinks the team owes him money, 11 years after the fact. Some guys just keep finding new ways to be dicks. [The Province]
- The big news from yesterday is that Chris Pronger has been shut down for the season with severe post-concussions symptoms. This has to be devastating news for a 37-year-old. It's different when you're Patrice Bergeron, David Perron or Sidney Crosby and you're 24; at this point in his career Pronger has to be worried if he'll be able to come back at all. Apparently his teammates did not know he was out until reporters informed them after their game against the Habs. [NHL.com]
- Continuing the bad-news-followed-by-something-good theme of this morning's post, Zung Nguyen, a player from the "New England Senior Hockey League", was suspended for "DEFECATING IN OPPONENT'S GLOVE FOLLOWING A FIGHT ON THE ICE." A man capable of pinching a loaf in a fit of anger on the ice would definitely scare me shitless. [Puck Daddy]
- Travis Zajac will make his season debut with the Devils tonight. Also a special night because Scott Niedermayer's jersey will be raised to the rafters. [Kuklas Korner]
- Adam McQuaid was only fined for his knee-on-knee with Nick Foligno. For some reason, I am unusually irate about this. Shanahan just handed down 4 games to Kevin Porter for the same play. Porter didn't even have a single penalty minute on the season before that, so he has no previous history. Why make an example of someone like that if you're going to let it go a week later? I don't believe there are conspiracies in the NHL, just a lot of people in positions of power who are not very intelligent. "Birdseeds", as AV would say.
- Jason Sosnovsky takes a look at parity amongst all the major sports, and not surprisingly hockey ranks quite high in terms of having a relatively even playing field. [The Hockey Writers]
- Here's a link to the excellent Ed Willes article about Graham James that was making the rounds yesterday. [The Province]