Vigneault said Ballard will not be joining the team on its upcoming six-game road trip. Maybe that could change but the coach was adamant he wasn’t going. That suggests the next game Ballard could possibly play is March 1.
That, of course, would mean he won’t see game action again until after the trade deadline, which, conveniently means he can be put on the Long Term Injury List. And that’s a move which could give the Canucks some salary cap breathing room.
You might recall last season when injuries to key Vancouver defensemen allowed the Canucks to not only keep Kevin Bieksa (thanks to an offseason injury to Sami Salo) but also acquire Chris Higgins and Maxim Lapierre at the deadline (thanks to Alex Edler’s back surgery in January).
Ballard’s cap hit is $4.2 million.
Flames keep showing life, Stars stumble once again
If you think the Dallas Stars are struggling because of defense more than anything else, then you’ll make sure to keep the video above “on file.”
There Kari Lehtonen was, helpless on a 2-on-0 rush for the Calgary Flames, which Johnny Gaudreau finished with calm and ease. For some, that goal is the symbol of the Stars’ season.
Either way, it was a painful goal in the Flames’ 2-1 win against the Stars. Calgary won despite Dallas firing 30 shots on goal versus the Flames’ 20.
One team climbing, the other stumbling
With that, the Flames are now on a four-game winning streak. Since falling to 5-10-1 on Nov. 12, the Flames have gone 9-3-1 in their last 13 games, pushing them to 14-13-2 overall. Gaudreau coming back is the icing on the cake after Chad Johnson really took charge of the Flames’ top job.
During a similar span, the Stars can’t seem to get it together. Dallas stood at 6-6-3 after beating the Oilers 3-2 on Nov. 11. They’re now 10-11-6, essentially standing in place as a .500 team.
Dallas can’t seem to get momentum going, a thought that might have left them envious of the team on the other end of the ice on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, it wasn’t just about Jack Eichel vs. Connor McDavid. Instead, it was a clash between a fleet of young scorers who were in their prime, with the Buffalo Sabres coming up on top against the Edmonton Oilers.