One surprise win, and one no-brainer. That's all the Canucks have to show after a 6 game swing out East, having lost ground in their battle to make the playoffs not so much in points, but in running out of time the rest of the way to make them up. The Flames had their bye week, and the Canucks did not take advantage of it. The playoffs were a long shot at best, but trying to sell hope for a less than 5% chance is simply ridiculous. Time to focus on amassing draft picks by selling at the deadline and legitimately rebuilding this team. That means the hard reality of shipping fan favorites out the door.
|Lost 2||Streak||Won 1
||Goals For Per 60 (GF60)
||Goals Against Per 60 (GA60)
|15.3 (27)||Power Play %||20.4 (12)|
|78.6 (24)||Penalty Kill %||80.8 (19)|
|51.7 (7)||Faceoff Win %||49.2 (19)|
||Shooting %||8.7 (19)|
||Corsi For %||50.8 (12)
Stats from NHL.com and www.hockey-reference.com
The big news heading into this game is one that probably no one predicted. The Flames have called up Matt Bartkowski (yes, that Matt Bartkowski) and he will be in the lineup tonight for Calgary. Bartkowski was recently released from his AHL stint in Providence before signed to a PTO with the Flames. What does this mean? Likely, not much. Depth move by the Flames, but not necessarily one that makes them better as we well know. Even if he lights up the Canucks tonight, take his addition with a grain of salt. It's not going to make the Flames contenders. That being said, I fully expect him to have some kind of ridiculous game where he registers multiple points and turnovers.
Oi, what a mess. So, let's see where we're at. Despite being one of the few Canucks who consistently got shots on net on this road trip, Reid Boucher is back in the press box, replaced by Brendan Gaunce. No issue with Gaunce being back in the lineup, but good lord there are others who could use a night off/sent message rather than Boucher. Speaking of which...
Megna has become the Canucks version of Rasputin. Despite the outward appearance to everyone that he is not worthy, Willie continues to treat him like he is this team's MVP, giving him opportunities that others would kill for. And opportunities that, as a quick glance at his stats would tell you, he has done SFA with. It is a poster for why the Canucks where they are.
There are some positive things about today though. The Canucks will be unveiling a Pat Quinn statue outside of the arena tonight, in remembrance of the legendary coach and that magical 1994 playoff run. It's also Hockey Day in Canada, and Hockey Talks Day in Vancouver, one that is so very important to the team and it's fans, remembering Rick Rypien and the others who lost their battles with mental illness.
I have to be honest with you, right now my own battle is taking a bit of a setback. The stress of the situation that the world finds itself in is weighing on me, and I have taken a couple days off work to try and recharge my batteries a bit. One thing you need to remember right now if you find yourself getting overwhelmed: Don't stay silent. Talk to someone about what you're feeling. It doesn't necessarily have to be a doctor (though if you find yourself having suicidal thoughts, do not hesitate to get help), but a family member, friend, co-worker... hell, even a member of our lil community here. My door is always open if you need an ear. The best way to help someone with mental illness is listening to them. Let them know you are there, and you can do what you can to help them get through. It's an illness, not a character deficiency. Some of the strongest people in the world have been brought to their knees by this, but battle through. You can too.
GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN
Another new one from HAVOK, off their upcoming album 'Conformicide'.