Preseason Games Nos. 1 and 2: Splitsville

Ryan Lambert
September 21 2010 04:51PM



Today is the first day we will see NHL players doing their jobs in a competitive format since last June, and it's been considerably longer than that since we saw anyone do it in a Flames jersey. Whether that's a good or bad thing remains to be seen, I suppose, but as far as the competition goes, well, you may want to temper your excitement.

To give you an idea of the type of rosters both Canucks squads are going to be rolling out tonight, all one needs to do is look at their top lines. In Calgary, Joel Perrault, a 27-year-old veteran of a whopping 89 NHL games, runs the pivot for the formidable duo of Jeff Tambellini and Jannik Hansen.

But Canucks kept the big guns back home. They will start with a line featuring, from left to right, the ghost of Peter Schaeffer's unimpressive career, brainless thug Rick Rypien (his dad was a boxer!) and Victor Oreskovich, whom the Florida Panthers of all teams relegated to fourth-line minutes last year.

The Flames, on the other hand, are bringing MOABs to what Canucks brass clearly intended to be a snowball fight. Among the names of those playing in Vancouver tonight are Rene Bourque, Niklas Hagman, Matt Stajan and Mark Giordano, which is sufficiently impressive. But they're icing a more-or-less NHLer-laden roster for the home crowd in what must be an effort to placate those that would show up to the Saddledome tonight with torches and effigies ready to go if there's even a hint that Olli Jokinen is still fairly bad.

Speaking of our dear Pumpkinhead, it's interesting that they're already giving the top line of Tanguay-Jokinen-Iginla a go, perhaps in hopes of creating some sort of time vortex that would pull the universe back four years when that unit would have been considered formidable, rather than the broken-down remnants of a rapidly-yellowing Darryl Sutter wishlist that is, honestly, a bit mauve-ish already.

Of note too is that despite Vancouver rolling out two rosters, they saw fit to avoid using either Sedin twin, Roberto Luongo, Dan Hamhuis, Mason Raymond, Mikael Samuelsson, Alex Edler, and so on and so forth. Although it is comical that even with a bunch of 19-year-olds in the lineup, they're not going to give Darcy Hordichuk any more than like eight minutes a night because he really is awful.

I figure most of the stuff to watch for tonight mostly has to do with the blue line. Issues worth tracking include whether Robyn Regehr seems particularly engaged, since he spent so much of last year appearing to be rather the opposite, and what in the name of Lanny McDonald Jay Bouwmeester is doing paired with Matt Pelech — or more specifically, if this means he's about to usurp Adam Pardy's regular lineup spot like everyone figures he will.

Ah well, if nothing else, it's real live NHLish hockey. You're gonna love it.

 

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Yer ol' buddy Lambert is handsome and great and everyone loves him. Also you can visit his regular blog at The Two-Line Pass or follow him on Twitter. Lucky you!
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#2 Marcus
September 21 2010, 11:42PM
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Kotalik looks good with Backlund. Pelech is a lock and I'm interested to see some more of Kronwall.

The vets played keep away like they we're teenagers babysitting 10 year olds and that's how it should be.

Glad to see Phaneuf is the same ol douche. heh.

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#3 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 05:09PM
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Great return to the site Ryan. The 5th paragraph was particularly effective.

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#4 RossCreekNation
September 21 2010, 06:00PM
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the ghost of Peter Schaeffer's unimpressive career

in hopes of creating some sort of time vortex that would pull the universe back

Speaking of ghost's & time vortices, let me echo Kent's sentiment... "Great return to the site Ryan"... name change and all!

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#5 RossCreekNation
September 21 2010, 06:01PM
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Oh... and why does my SportsnetOne guide say NOTHING of this ice hockey matchup?

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#6 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 06:03PM
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RossCreekNation wrote:

Oh... and why does my SportsnetOne guide say NOTHING of this ice hockey matchup?

Not sure. MLB is all that shows up for me right now. Hopefully that's not accurate.

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#7 Robert Cleave
September 21 2010, 06:25PM
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As an update, Shaw Cable subscribers can watch the game in HD on channel 301 and in SD on channel 320. If your on-screen guide shows a request for $15.95 or $13.95, you can disregard that, as the game is free.

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#8 Brent G.
September 21 2010, 06:43PM
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Robert Cleave wrote:

As an update, Shaw Cable subscribers can watch the game in HD on channel 301 and in SD on channel 320. If your on-screen guide shows a request for $15.95 or $13.95, you can disregard that, as the game is free.

Sweet thanks! I'm so pumped to have hockey back even if its just preseason and means absolutely nothing (even as an indicator)

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#9 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 07:13PM
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Doesn't look I'll be catching this one tonight owing to a baffling and inelegant roll-out of the Roger's channel/channels for Telus.

Updates from everyone would be appreciated.

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#10 Robert Cleave
September 21 2010, 07:24PM
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That was a decent looking Flame PP, and interesting that they put Bouwmeester in front of the net with Joker on the point. We might see that when real hockey starts.

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#11 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 07:27PM
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Robert Cleave wrote:

That was a decent looking Flame PP, and interesting that they put Bouwmeester in front of the net with Joker on the point. We might see that when real hockey starts.

That's what they did in the Red and White.

Any decent scoring chances?

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#12 Robert Cleave
September 21 2010, 07:31PM
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Kent Wilson wrote:

That's what they did in the Red and White.

Any decent scoring chances?

Yeah, Iggy had a couple from the slot. It looked like they had a clue.

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#13 Robert Cleave
September 21 2010, 07:39PM
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That's two shifts where Iggy's line has been worked at EV by Hansen and Hordichuk. Hmmm.

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#14 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 07:41PM
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Robert Cleave wrote:

That's two shifts where Iggy's line has been worked at EV by Hansen and Hordichuk. Hmmm.

It's preseason, I know...but I really don't like to hear that.

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#15 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 07:52PM
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The real question is......how does Kris Chucko look?

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#16 Brent G.
September 21 2010, 07:52PM
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Haha they just showed a highlight of the Toronto game where Foligno walked around Phaneuf and he just watched. Its funny because I have heard many claim Dion is going to be a Norris trophy candidate this year...fools. You need to understand defense and check your ego at the door for that; not score nice goals and throw big hits.

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#17 dustin642
September 21 2010, 07:54PM
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Wow, that was a period that our "top line" would love to have back. Either its Jokinen moving up and Tanguay passing behind him, or Iggy getting robbed from his sweet spot on the PP or the line as a whole getting dominated (and going -1 in the 1st). Also, Ivanans (I know, its only been one period) has not looked that bad. Smart plays and stayed away from penalties that he normally would not have hesitated to take.

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#18 Brent G.
September 21 2010, 07:54PM
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Kent Wilson wrote:

The real question is......how does Kris Chucko look?

He looks about average, Kotalik looks like crap. I haven't been too impressed with Buow so far although he is jumping in the play. I have enjoyed poontang and the Joker actually hasn't looked too bad. Iggy hasnt impressed me much either. I have enjoyed Pelech but I'm likely biased.

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#19 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 07:55PM
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Brent G. wrote:

Haha they just showed a highlight of the Toronto game where Foligno walked around Phaneuf and he just watched. Its funny because I have heard many claim Dion is going to be a Norris trophy candidate this year...fools. You need to understand defense and check your ego at the door for that; not score nice goals and throw big hits.

I saw bits of that game and Phaneuf made two other egregious errors - leading to a 10 bell SH chance against and a 2-on-1/goal against.

Still making the same mistakes.

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#20 Brent G.
September 21 2010, 07:57PM
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@dustin642

Agreed I actually thought his line was one of the more effective ones out there. It honestly looks like a game that means nothing to the vets. They all look to be in cruise and dont seem to care much and the kids/fringe guys are working very hard.

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#21 Robert Cleave
September 21 2010, 07:59PM
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Kent Wilson wrote:

I saw bits of that game and Phaneuf made two other egregious errors - leading to a 10 bell SH chance against and a 2-on-1/goal against.

Still making the same mistakes.

If he turns into Ed Jovanovski, I won't gloat or anything, but damned if that isn't the path he looks like he's headed down.

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#22 Brent G.
September 21 2010, 07:59PM
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@Kent Wilson

I still really like Phaneuf but I will admit I do kinda enjoy watching him fail. There are a lot of cocky fans who thought we outright lost that trade and I just hope this year shows it was at least even. Phaneuf a Norris candidate? Please...

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#23 Brent G.
September 21 2010, 08:03PM
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Considering it is preseason I actually wouldnt mind to see if they would at least just try to put Backlund on the first line. I am just curious to see how the kid does.

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#24 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:03PM
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Robert Cleave wrote:

If he turns into Ed Jovanovski, I won't gloat or anything, but damned if that isn't the path he looks like he's headed down.

It's a hard prediction to avoid after his last couple of seasons.

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#25 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:04PM
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Brent G. wrote:

I still really like Phaneuf but I will admit I do kinda enjoy watching him fail. There are a lot of cocky fans who thought we outright lost that trade and I just hope this year shows it was at least even. Phaneuf a Norris candidate? Please...

Not sure if I'll take pleasure in it or anything, but it certainly wouldn't surprise me.

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#26 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:07PM
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Ivanans to the box? Better get used to that.

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#27 Brent G.
September 21 2010, 08:08PM
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I dont know if any of you have ever really looked into this or not but how good is Ballard really? He doesnt seem like a very likely person to become the player they hope he does...

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#28 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:11PM
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Brent G. wrote:

I dont know if any of you have ever really looked into this or not but how good is Ballard really? He doesnt seem like a very likely person to become the player they hope he does...

He's played in Regehr-like circumstances since playing in PHX.

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#29 dustin642
September 21 2010, 08:15PM
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Wow do I hate having to watch games with Canucks announcers. I will take 10 Loubardias' any day over the John Shorthouse/John Garrett combo. Shorthouse is as interesting as genital warts and Garrett only speaks when he was something negative to say about the other team. At least Loub "tries"

WOW, Kotalik did something.... Too bad it was a bad something...

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#30 dustin642
September 21 2010, 08:15PM
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BACKLUND GOOOOALLLLL shorthanded from Tanguay

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#31 Brent G.
September 21 2010, 08:16PM
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As expected Pooty-Tang is going to be a great addition. What a sweet pass no one else could do on this team.

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#32 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:16PM
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Backlund from Tanguay on SH 2on1?

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#33 Robert Cleave
September 21 2010, 08:16PM
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Hell of a play by Tanguay, he looked like he had really good burst on that goal.

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#34 John Deere Green
September 21 2010, 08:17PM
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Why am I not seeing this game on my Shaw dish? It says it is on 419 (snet pacific) but is blacked out. What the heck? I checked 418- baseball, 414 (snet 1) says Bob McGowan and it is actually this week in baseball. If I can't watch games this year Ken King will be getting an e-mail from me for sure. What is the score? I'm too lazy to turn the radio on.

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#35 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:18PM
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Robert Cleave wrote:

Hell of a play by Tanguay, he looked like he had really good burst on that goal.

Yeah. Like I said, he looked like his old self in the R&W game too. Good to hear there's some modicum of ability left.

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#36 dustin642
September 21 2010, 08:19PM
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On a side bet, do you think Ivanans and Hordichuk are going to "dance like bears" tonight?

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#37 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:19PM
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John Deere Green wrote:

Why am I not seeing this game on my Shaw dish? It says it is on 419 (snet pacific) but is blacked out. What the heck? I checked 418- baseball, 414 (snet 1) says Bob McGowan and it is actually this week in baseball. If I can't watch games this year Ken King will be getting an e-mail from me for sure. What is the score? I'm too lazy to turn the radio on.

Apparently it's 301 for Shaw.

game is currently 1-1.

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#38 Robert Cleave
September 21 2010, 08:21PM
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John Deere Green wrote:

Why am I not seeing this game on my Shaw dish? It says it is on 419 (snet pacific) but is blacked out. What the heck? I checked 418- baseball, 414 (snet 1) says Bob McGowan and it is actually this week in baseball. If I can't watch games this year Ken King will be getting an e-mail from me for sure. What is the score? I'm too lazy to turn the radio on.

There are overflow channels, JDG. Try 107 or 412 for SD, 452 or 396 for HD.

And it's 1-1. Hansen for Vancouver, Backlund for Calgary.

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#39 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:21PM
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A friend of mine on site at the other game says Bourque looks great so far. Game is still 0-0.

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#40 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:21PM
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Is that Jokinen skating in front of his own net and giving it away?

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#41 dustin642
September 21 2010, 08:24PM
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Kent Wilson wrote:

Is that Jokinen skating in front of his own net and giving it away?

Forget Seabrook, maybe Jokinen should be known as "the adventure"

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#42 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:25PM
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dustin642 wrote:

Forget Seabrook, maybe Jokinen should be known as "the adventure"

Watching him carry the puck drives me nuts. Obvious speed/skill, but a 10 cent head - long, looping paths, needless east/west routes, needless risks.

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#43 Brent G.
September 21 2010, 08:26PM
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This is probably looking a little ahead but I wonder when Dutter looks to sign Glencross and Giordano to extensions. I highly doubt White stays but hopefully Gio does.

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#44 dustin642
September 21 2010, 08:28PM
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Kent Wilson wrote:

Watching him carry the puck drives me nuts. Obvious speed/skill, but a 10 cent head - long, looping paths, needless east/west routes, needless risks.

Very true, the only time he does something like that that I enjoy is during the shootout when he starts from way back and goes about 100mph to the net

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#45 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:29PM
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dustin642 wrote:

Very true, the only time he does something like that that I enjoy is during the shootout when he starts from way back and goes about 100mph to the net

Haha yup. No problems with that.

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#46 dustin642
September 21 2010, 08:39PM
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Cameron/Backlund standing out for me so far. With a little more strength Cameron could be an effective player. The most noticeable Canuck is obviously Eddie Lack. Without him the Flames may have a bit of a lead.... Moss/Glencross have been a solid combo thus far and Moss seems to be very comfortable at centre.

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#47 Rain Dogs
September 21 2010, 08:41PM
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Pelech looks good to me.

Ivanis is awful, he is a terrible, terrible skater, with no speed and a plodding stride.

Iggy, is already doing the one-way, lazy back-check thing.

I like what I've seen from Armstrong, Negrin and Backlund.

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#48 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:44PM
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Thanks for the updates gents.

Sounds like Jokinen is still a flawed player from what I've heard. No real surprises there if so.

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#49 John Deere Green
September 21 2010, 08:45PM
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Thanks for the help guys but I still can't find it on your suggestions either. 301 is CBC crap, and the others Robert suggested will not let me turn to; like they don't exist. The guide say that these channels aren't there either. I'm on standard definition not HD. Getting ready to toss remote at T.V.! Frustrating. Good things you guys are here to give excellant play-by-play!

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#50 Kent Wilson
September 21 2010, 08:47PM
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John Deere Green wrote:

Thanks for the help guys but I still can't find it on your suggestions either. 301 is CBC crap, and the others Robert suggested will not let me turn to; like they don't exist. The guide say that these channels aren't there either. I'm on standard definition not HD. Getting ready to toss remote at T.V.! Frustrating. Good things you guys are here to give excellant play-by-play!

Something similar happened to me this evening. It's the radio for us.

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