I understand that the NHL season is 82 games long, but I have to be pleased with the effort I saw from the Canucks last night. Although they started a touch slow and relied heavily on Luongo to keep them in the game, they went into the first intermission with a one goal lead and then came out fast and furious in the second and third period to put a further five pucks past Kiprusoff for a six buzz win over Calgary.
Now I’m realistic enough to know that it’s too early to be planning the parade route (although it will likely head down Georgia from GM Place via Expo Blvd, Smithe, and Hamilton right through to Denman), but the effort put in by the team last night was phenomenal. Each of the lines played with chemistry only seen in recent years by the West Coast Express and to a man they played hard. Whether it was Jannik Hansen (I couldn’t believe my eyes when it happened) throwing down to show Langkow that messing with Louie is a bad idea or Bernier answering the bell when Phaneuf dropped Hank with a big open-ice shoulder (it was a good hit). Not only that, the team was buzzing on the ice with speed and confidence. Hopefully this effort is duplicated on Saturday.
Aside from the win and utter shiz kicking that Calgary was provided, it was also a night where the Canucks held a tribute to remember the life of Luc Bourdon.
For those that were not aware, Luc was lost in a motorcycle accident earlier this year leaving behind a grieving family, hockey team, and city. Although I was amazed to hear that he had donated $10k to his hometown minor hockey association, I can’t say I was surprised as what I had read and heard about him led me to believe he was a kid with a strong upbringing and good head on his shoulders. With that said, the tribute was quite fitting. Whether it was the couple that won Bourdon’s last game-worn jersey giving it back to his family, the LB patch that’s going to be worn on every Canuck’s helmet, or a sombre version of Big League sung by Tom Cochrane and Kenny Greer while a video ran on the big screens, the tribute was very well prepared. It was tough to sit here and watch it without having a tear in my eye. Rest in Peace Luc!