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DO WE GET TO SEE SCHNEIDER?

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Record: Lightning (17-20-3) Canucks (26-14-3)
Previous games: None
Game time: 7:30pm on SUN (HD)

That's what we really want to know right? We want to SEE this myth of a goaltender who plays on the Westcoast that people speak of. He's the one who may be a good fit to be a starter next season for us in Tampa, or at least that's what everyone seems to say right?

Preview and more Schneider talk after the jump...
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As a disclaimer, I'm a Canucks fan first, and since I watch almost every game the Canucks play, I'll say that Schneider has the potential to be the real deal. He's played really solid in the starts he's gotten and he's had lots of time to develop. Unlike the people who ask if Tokarski should be called up (and no he should not be), Schneider has had time in the AHL to get the success and experience he needs to be a good goaltender. When he was ready to be in the NHL, they gave him another season in the AHL to get more starts. He was hungry to move from the AHL to NHL. When he was ready to move up in to the position of backup, he was given the chance. What he has proved in his starts with the Canucks, is that he is able to battle for the starting position against Luongo and though we are a fickle bunch here in Vancouver, some Canuck fans think he should be the starter for the longterm here as opposed to Luongo.

Of course, Schneider does have a good defensive core in front of him and his team plays hard for him when he's in net. But even with the great team, he's a legit goaltender. He's still an RFA this summer, but the Canucks can only hold on to him for so much longer. Sooner or later, he's going to get PAID.

As for when he's going to get traded, I don't think it's going to happen till this summer. The Canucks have a great tandem in him and Luongo and they wouldn't go into the playoffs without a solid guy backing up Luongo in net. Don't expect a trade to happen before the trade deadline for him, if it happens, it will be around the draft. The question for the Canucks is what do they want in exchange for Cory that the Lightning has?

As of right now, the Canucks who lost last night to the Panthers, haven't said if Schneider is starting, but there's a good chance since Luongo played last night. As for the team as a whole, the Canucks have been the opposite of ours. After a dismal October, the Canucks have been holding court at the top of the Western Conference. They are atop the PP in the NHL and have a solid PK. After a lackluster effort of play in Sunrise, AV is going to be bearing down on the team to win the game against the Lightning.

They are facing their fair share of injuries with the most recent one being Sami Salo out with a concussion from a Brad Marchand hit on Saturday. Marchand got a 5 game suspension from the clipping penalty. Ebbett also suffered from a broke collar bone in the game and last night was replaced with Mike Duco; Sulzer took the place of Salo on the blue line.

As for us, we're trying to avoid a four game losing streak to the Canadian teams. Injuries are still hurting us badly but so is poor play on the PP, oh and goaltending. And those Canadian teams, they just keep winning over us. Let's not make it four in a row.

Go bolts

Line-up Notes:

Canucks injuries: Sami Salo, David Booth, Aaron Rome, Andrew Ebbett, Aaron Volpatti, Byron Bitz

Lightning injuries: Ryan Shannon, Victor Hedman, Adam Hall, JT Wyman, Mattias Ohlund

Links:
Official Lightning preview