Archive for the ‘Canucks’ Category

Olympocalypse! Canada loses in hockey and I make a video

I realize it’s probably a bit tacky to suddenly return after not posting for a long while to try to drive more traffic to a video I made, but hey I still have the most posts on Vancouver Metblogs so I figure it should be allowed.  Granted most of those posts were just a video of the sea otters at the Vancouver Aquarium floating around their tank holding hands, but it’s hard work making that seem new after the fourth hundred time.  And gosh aren’t they cute?

In exchange for housing during the Olympics an out-of-town friend of mine provided me with tickets to see the Men’s Olympic Ice Hockey game between Canada and the United States of America.  Inspiredby the righteously awesome “A Night At The Emirates” video [yt] I set out to make my own fan’s perspective video.  It’s hard to say how it turned out because I’ve spent too much time on it to see it clearly and my wife loves me just enough not to insult it to my face.

So enjoy the video as you prepare to watch Team Canada (hopefully) beat up on Germany tonight.  Looking on the bright side it was a valuable wake-up call early in the tournament that hopefully will let us adjust before facing tougher opposition like Russia; though to be fair that’s what the game against Switzerland should have been.

Vancouver Five: new names for GM Place

GM Place

 With the fate of General Motors in doubt [nyt] the Vancouver Canucks’ home ice may soon be needing a new sponsor, or at least a new name.  Here are a few ideas for what we may be calling GM Place next season.

  1. Money Mart Place: In this economy Money Mart might be the only business with cash to spare. 
  2. Fat City Arena: See this eariler Vancouver Five for explanation [mbv].
  3. Rogers Place: There was a well fairly decent rumour that Rogers tried to buy the naming rights to BC Place, but the city would not let them change the roof’s colour to Rogers’ red.  But hey they need to do something with all that iPhone money.
  4. Happy Planet Juice Centre: I think the founder of that company might have some pull with city council [wp].  Plus wouldn’t that just please the pants off the rest of Canada who see us all as hippies anyway?
  5. Trevor Linden Memorial Rink: In the future when Trevor Linden signle handedly fixes the economy before leading the negotiations that see our alien invaders surrender, we’ll be quite happy to name the Canucks’ home ice after him.

Mats Sundin brings memories of Messier

While Mats Sundin may prove to be the missing puzzle piece that finally helps the Canucks bring the Stanley Cup back to Vancouver, he also might prove to be the vanguard of yet another disastrous period in Canucks history.  How does he stack up to Vancouver’s previous Horseman of the Apocalypse?
Mats Sundin playing for the Leafs

Mats Sundin playing for the Leafs

Mats Sundin

  • Age signing for Canucks: 37
  • Canucks Rival Played For: Toronto Maple Leafs
  • Team Leader Replacing: Marcus Naslund, Trevor Linden
  • Number of Stanley Cups Won: 0
  • Selection of Awards Won: Mark Messier Leadership Award, Regular All-Star, Regular for Swedish National Team



Mark Messier playing for the Canucks, remember that?

Mark Messier playing for the Canucks, remember that?

Mark Messier

  • Age When Signing for Canucks: 36
  • Canucks Rivals Played For: Edmonton Oilers, New York Rangers
  • Team Leader Replacing: Trevor Linden
  • Number of Stanley Cups Won: 6 (all prior to coming to Vancouver)
  • Selection of Awards Won: Conn Smythe Trophy, Regular All-Star, Regular Appearing for the Canadian National Team, ranked as the 12th best player ever by The Hockey News.




Mark Messier by: Håkan Dahlström from Flickr
Mats Sundin by: mlynaugh from Flickr

Glen Anderson makes the Hockey Hall of Fame

Glenn Anderson.jpg

I want to like the Vancouver Canucks, I really do. I want to feel like they’re my team, and try I’ve given it my all to root for them [mbv]. For God’s sake I’ve lived in British Columbia for the past twenty-four years, it’s about time I consider myself a Canucks fan. Right?

The thing is those formative years spent in Edmonton are powerful, and especially during the time I was there. Memory and nostalgia are a hard thing to overcome, which is why the good ol’ days always seem better than they were. It’s even harder to put aside the past when the past could kick the present’s ass on the ice any day of the week.

It’s not the Canucks’ fault that they’re not as good as the Oilers of my youth, because… well because nobody is. The team that I grew up with was the greatest hockey team the world has seen, and probably will ever see again until the NHL shrinks down to a smaller size. All the big money teams that the Red Wings or Colorado might try to put together will never compete with the Edmonton Oilers of the 1980s, it was just so good.

How good was it? It was so good that even the people who lived in the shadow of the giants like Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier and Paul Coffey are bound for the Hockey Hall of Fame. Yesterday Vancouver born Glen Anderson was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame [nhl] as a further sign that there was something special about that team. He’s not the first name that pops to mind when you think of the Oilers’ dynasty, but he was an important part.

He was even a Canuck for a few days in 1996, though he was claimed by the Oilers on waivers.

While I’d love to see the Canucks lift the cup, and in a lot of ways I think there’s certainly a segment of the Canuck fans that deserve to see their team win, I have to admit I’ll never love them as much as I love the Oilers. They’ll never be as good as the team I grew up with, though let’s be honest the Oilers will never be that good either.


When Canada gets on TV

Picture 8

I was talking with a few people the other day about how Vancouverites, and we included ourselves in that category, always get excited when we get a mention outside of Canada.  Especially when Americans even acknowledge our existence it sends us into twitters of excitement. 

Maybe it’s just our Canadian inferiority complex, or maybe it’s just we’re kind of vain and self-absorbed.  I can’t imagine New Yorkers being excited about having their city mentioned in a CBC show, but boy was I excited when the Vancouver Canucks and their ’95 playoff run got an extended mention on the show How I Met Your Mother last week [stc].

It’s certainly probably one of the best Canadian references, aside from The Simpsons‘ nearly constant jabs at our country or Jon Stewart calling the Conservative Party the equivalent of the American “Gay Nader Lovers For Peace Party”. 

What’s your favorite Canada, or Vancouver, reference on American or European media?  The Lumberjack sketch comes to mind.


Canucks win the Stanley Cup

Happy players at the end of the game, originally uploaded by Stina Magga.

Vancouver – Metroblogging News Service

The Vancouver Canucks last night became the first team to win the Stanley Cup, one game into the National Hockey League season, after smashing the Calgary Flames at home by a score of 6-0. The victory was so decisive that league Commissioner Gary Bettman felt that playing the remaining 81 games of the regular season, and the playoffs was pointless.

“Having reviewed the tapes of the season starting games it’s clear that there is no other team that could compete with the Canucks on the ice,” Bettman said in a press conference this morning where the coveted cup was awarded by podcast recorded from Toronto.

Bettman pointed out that the Canucks have always enjoyed strong season ticket sales, and after years of suffering with little to no playoff success the league felt it was time that the Vancouver fans were honoured for their bandwagon jumping.

Some hockey commentators have argued that there is more behind the league’s decision than one strong on-ice showing. The rumour is that the awarding of the league title is a signal to other teams to follow the board room examples of the Vancouver club.

“We’re seeing a lot of teams with a great deal of debt,” pointed out CBC commentator Ron McLean, “with the credit crisis building in the states there’s a good chance that we’ll see the league losing a lot of the newer expansion teams. To shore up support for one of the bed rock Canadian franchises, and to reward the fiscal suaveness of the Canucks the league decided to award the cup.”

McLean’s co-commentator Don Cherry disagreed, “They’ve got the most Europeans. They’ve got twins. That’s some kind of Swedish wet dream. You know what the Swedes make good, cheap futon frames that you can assemble at home, not hockey players. Hockey is Canadian like beer and repressed emotions leading to domestic violence.  This Stanley Cup heist by the league is just the latest in Euro-coddling.  First they make the boys wear helmets, and you know good old boys from Kingston don’t play with helmets.  Then they make them use these fibershade metal sticks and now this, all because someone in Zurich wanted it.”


"We Are All Canucks" more than just branding?

Johnny Canuck, originally uploaded by miss604.

Over the past few years the Canucks have been using the slogan “We Are All Canucks”. Now I think we all understood that meant that each and every Vancouverite was a part of the Canucks “team”. You know the part of the team that has to pay to go to the games, and that the rest of the team likes to play pranks on such as tricking us into buying a new jersey every year [kk].

We’re kind of treated like the kid who shows up to Little League Baseball wearing a football helmet for extra protection.

The thing is though I think we’ve been reading the slogan wrong. I think over the past few years the Canucks have just been softening us up, preparing us for their real plan. First they hired a rookie GM, then they let Marcus Naslund go without even trying to resign him while making wild claims about signing Sundin and then they became the first team to name a goaltender a captain since 1948 despite an NHL rule against the practice.

Don’t you see the next step here? The next stage in this plan to revolutionize the National Hockey League, the sport of hockey and even sport itself?

Right now regular Canucks fans appear in ads alongside the team. The thing is though hockey players are expensive. They want millions of dollars to play a sport that most people who play actually have to pay to. Are you thinking what I’m thinking?

We are all Canucks, because soon we’ll all be playing for the Canucks. Show up on game night with goalie equipment and you can play between the pipes. Have a pair of skates that fit you and were bought in the last six years? You’re a winger. And we’d pay for the privilage wouldn’t we. How much do you think the Canucks could auction off the right to take a face off against Sydney Crosby?

Kid with the football helmet, it’s your turn at bat.

Luongo made captain in decision only slightly against the rules


I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t think the Canucks have been making very good decisions lately. The off-season has had the sort of amateur blunders that make Newcastle United look like a properly organized football team. But that’s enough mixing sports, we’re here to talk about hockey and the Vancouver Canucks and how they’ve just gone an appointed goaltender Roberto Luongo as their captain.

Now of course there’s a rule against a goaltender being a captain in the NHL [wp] that’s based on that fact that since the primary on-ice role of the captain is to act as a liaison between the team and the officials during the game, and that it would be too time consuming for a goalie to rush out of his net to argue with the referee every time he wanted to argue said ref’s decision. So Luongo won’t technically be the captain, he won’t wear the ‘C’ or take part in any official face-offs say if the Queen were to stop by to drop the puck.


Canucks Season Preview: The hardest way to make an easy living

Trevor Linden figure

Let’s face it this year has the potential to be a horrible hockey year for Vancouver. Pick up tickets to the WHL Giants because the Canucks have all the markings of a disaster about them as the year is about to begin. Making the playoffs will be unlikely in a competitive Western Conference where every team has strengthened while the Canucks have been throwing talent overboard as if hoping to right a sinking ship. The off-season has been a farce and there’s nothing to suggest that’s about to change.

How bad is it? You’ll find out after the jump.


The Vancouver Five: reasons it’s a bad year to be a Canucks fan

Trevor Linden figure

Let’s face it, most teams after missing the playoffs would spend the off-season making the team stronger, and building on the strengths that they did have.  Replace the GM?  Sure.  Replace the GM with your star player’s agent?  Okay, sure, kind of icky and incestuous but okay.  Make your star’s agent the GM and then lose the star to free agency?  That’s fucking top notch dinkwallet behaviour.

So here it is, five reasons why 2008-2009 will be a year to forget for the Vancouver Canucks.

  1. No Trevor Linden: he may not have been the on-ice force that the Canucks needed these last few years but he was the sort of leader who could help shape the attitude of a team, and bring in the wins.  His retirement is an unquantifiable blow to the team.
  2. Mike Gillis:  Let’s face it even if bringing in Mats Sundin would have been a good move, making the move so public was only going to lead to heartache.  Not talking about players until they’re actually signed would be a good first move.  Talking about how awesome you are is generally a good way to look like a putz.  Look at the Canucks official news site and you’ll see that nearly half the stories are about who the team would like to have signed signed [vc].  It’s even more pathetic than my list of women I’d like to have slept with.  (Though with names like Anne Hathaway & Rachael Leigh Cook on the list, who’d call that pathetic?)
  3. Roberto Luongo only plays one position: Cloning isn’t legal and Luongo isn’t going to score us goals.  He’s our best goalie, possibly ever, but let’s face it we need an offense.  Of course suggestions that we trade him for a goal scorer are insane, I mean shit doesn’t anyone remember the history of the last five years?  Goalies can win games too, and you need one in the playoffs.
  4. Everyone else in the West is actually good: If you’re going to making lots of mistakes, it’s always good to be in a division where everyone else are making mistakes.  The West is too focused and too difficult for the Canucks to continue to be run like a Punch and Judy show. 
  5. We drafted twins: Seriously identical Swedish twins and after years of having them we still haven’t come up with any crazy twin-centric plays.  Any other team would be having them change jerseys, call each other by different names and secrelty switching one of them with the goalie to build some kind of Might Ducks style play.  Maybe we should have hired Emilio Estevez for our GM.
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