On Wednesday night, the Canucks continued their stellar streak, winning their 7th game in a row. They are 16-1-2 in their last 19 games. Daniel Sedin scored the 10,000th goal in franchise history. Luongo put up 43 saves and was named the 1st star of the game. And, oh yeah, he didn't come out onto the ice after being named the 1st star like he normally does.
One of these things is not like the others. One of these things just doesn't belong. One of these things is not a story.
And yet, the coverage immediately following the game from both the Vancouver Sun and Province hockey blogs would seem to indicate that the biggest story of the entire night was Luongo not skating out for the first star. And Jason Botchford for the Province devoted an entire article to this complete non-story.
Now don't get me wrong, I like Botchford a lot, and to his credit, the article's lede even admits that this story is nothing. In fact, the article almost seems to be apologizing for even existing and it makes a good point about Luongo playing with emotion and passion. In fact, another version of the article even outright says it's a non-story in the headline. It's just a shame that something so non-story-like gets treated like it is in fact a story. To be fair, Botchford's article seems forced into existence by the fact it was being talked about at all. For that we can blame some of the more incendiary reactions by the media.
The initial reaction of Brad Ziemer is the most unnecessarily over-the-top, referring to the action as a "snub" and a "mistake," and suggesting that Luongo should have "sucked it up" and that he should "make sure it doesn't happen again." Seriously?
Let's break this down: Luongo is not required to come out onto the ice when he is named one of the stars of the game. Period. It's certainly something that most players do on home ice and fans have certainly come to expect it, but he is not required to do it. What's more, Luongo has consistently made a habit of giving away his goalie stick whenever he is named first star. Again, this is something that isn't required of him, but because he has done it so much it's become expected. As fans, we have no right to be upset when an athlete doesn't do something that isn't required of him. Even if you get into the argument that "we pay his salary" or something ridiculous like that, Luongo earned his paycheck by stopping 43 shots to win the game for the Canucks. Anything else on top of that is gravy.
The fact that Luongo has, in every other game in which he was named first star, skated onto the ice and given his stick to a kid in the crowd is commendable. When he doesn't do it one time, because he is upset about something that happened less than a minute before, it doesn't matter. It's not a story. It is, at most, something to briefly mention in a game recap in connection to how passionate Roberto Luongo is about his performance.
And to fans who do think it's a big deal: get a life. Find something better to complain about, because clearly you feel the need to complain about something. Maybe complain about how meaningless the Grammys have become or how stupid it is that Scott Pilgrim vs. The World was a box-office bomb. Just don't complain about idiotic things like this.