The NHL is back and I am excited. Yes, that means I’m a sheep. I’m part of the problem. I don’t care. Professional hockey is my favorite sport and the fact that I was denied it for 3 months sucks. So why would I deny myself even more of it with some damn, fool idealistic crusade of revenge that in the grand scheme of things doesn’t really mean anything? Owners will still be rich and so will the players. So I say, “Bring on the Pucks!”
In honor of the news that the boys will be dropping the puck again in about two weeks I’m bringing back the Lightning card of the week. I know Version One of this project was shorter than a Blue Jacket’s winning streak, but that’s not my fault. I got a job and that cut into my writing time! I got married and that cut into my writing time (not sure how, but I’m sure it did). I started working overnights and that cut into my writing time (well that one is kind of true).
So let’s start out with an addition to the personal collection.
|Look how loose those chinstraps are - correlation to concussions?|
2002 Pacific Riding Shotgun Vincent Lecavalier/ Matthew Barnaby
As a Lecavalier fan I’m half-heartedly collecting as many cards of his as possible. Around Christmas I was doing a little surfing on COMC and stumbled across this card. What a perfect card to sum up the early-2000s Tampa Bay Lightning. Their best offensive weapon paired with……Matthew Barnaby.
The back of the card notes that Barnaby’s “hard-nosed playing style” was brought to Tampa to play as Lecavalier’s winger. Which I guess is a good thing, because he surely wasn’t there to score. In 58 games spread over two seasons he managed just 8 points with the Lightning (although he did rack up 167 penalty minutes).
Although it looks like Lecavalier had a hand in at least ½ of Barnaby’s 8 points so I guess they had some sort of chemistry. From what I can remember Nils Ekman rounded out that power-packed line. All of those points came in the 2000-01 season as Barnaby managed to go 20 games in 2001-02 without scoring a point before being shipped off to the Rangers for a Slovakian named Zdeno. Sadly his last name was Ciger not Chara (Big Ciggy did score 12 points for the Lightning before heading back to Slovakia).
Matthew Barnaby would continue to do Matthew Barnaby things for another four seasons before briefly being a tv commentator. He’s had a few run-ins with the law since he retired and has spent most of the last year or so off the radar apparently running some youth hockey training camps.
As for Lecavalier, he finally found someone to really ride shotgun for him as Vinny Prospal came to the team and within three seasons he had a Stanley Cup and a string of 30+ goal seasons.