Summer 2014: TRUE BLUE

From game 1 to game 82 every season,  no matter the outcome, the true fans will stand by their teams.

Happy summer to all my readers!

Last summer I had a summer series that featured player profiles. THIS year, I decided to make it a summer about my favourite part of Vancouver Canucks hockey: YOU, the fans!

What am I asking? To feature YOU, the fans on the blog all summer long! I would love to feature YOU, all that is required is the willingness to answer a few Canucks oriented questions and be a part of the series that will feature your answers, anecdotes and whatever else it is that makes you a fan of hockey and my Canucks! Whether you have been a Canucks fans your entire life, or for only a little while, or if you grew up in BC, live across the country or halfway around the world, I would love to hear your Canucks story! If you would like to be a part of the series, please let me know and send me an e-mail: nucksaid@gmail.com with the subject line TRUE BLUE and I will send you the questions to answer at your convenience!

A massive THANK-YOU to all of you, in advance! Here’s to a SUMMER of YOU, the best hockey fans around the globe!

As always, until next time, nuck said.

Sarah E.L.

Social Negativity, I’ve had it with you!

Wow, it really is incredible how quickly social media can determine the opinion of millions. It is really disheartening to see all of the negativity that is out there right surrounding the Canucks. Is it a little disappointing to see the way things have played out against the Sharks in the first 3 games? Yes, but the worst part of the first round so far has been the reaction of the local media and the fans across the many avenues of social media.

I know that it seems impossible and improbable to most fans that the Canucks can win tomorrow’s game let alone this series. Teams have come back from being down 3-0 although only a few teams have come back to win [Philadelphia in 2010 against the Bruins!], many have clawed their way back to make series that seemed predictable and unlikely very intriguing [Blackhawks against the Canucks 2011, Detroit against the Sharks 2011]. I’m not saying the Canucks will or will not come back from being down 3-0, I know that it is a highly unlikely path BUT I am saying that however slim a chance it may be, there is always a chance. You can call my delusional if it makes you feel better, but I have always believed that there is nothing wrong with having a little positivity once in a while.

There is nothing wrong with cheering for your team especially when things are not going well. You should feel free to cheer for your team no matter what. Social media outlets should NOT determine or help shape your opinion of the team. I am sick to death of the negativity that has taken over social media the last few days. It would be nice to hear about the local media and fans actually rooting for the team instead of tearing it down on a daily basis. Perhaps instead of jumping constantly to the negative you should try being positive.

Sometimes, I really hate social media! It is incredible that no matter the size of a mistake that social media spins it completely out of control until all one can see in their timeline is the negative. Well, I have had my fill, thank-you very much. No more negativity for me today!

I may be one of the few positive fans out there, but that’s okay! I will be positive for all the doubters!

Will you be joining me in cheering for our team in game 4? I hope so, the team needs YOUR support. No matter what the outcome in tomorrow’s game or this series I will still be cheering for my Canucks.

As always, until next time, nuck said.

Sarah E.L.

Game 3 turnaround & those pesky #Bandwagoners

This post is a little late, yes its true. A crazy work schedule will do that to a person. The NHL season is under way and teams are beginning to take shape. Streaks, good and bad are making themselves known. Has your team made it into the win column yet? Has your favourite player been struck down with a long-term injury? Do you understand the new rules…or new penalties[concealing the puck!]? Are you tired yet of hearing about the band-wagoners? Have you had any luck at getting to the arena to see your team play? These are just a few of the story lines that are affecting all the teams as the season is now in session.

Getting back to business regarding the Canucks, they have had many story lines of their own. David Booth is out for another 4-5 weeks with a groin strain. Kesler is expected back on the ice within the next week [but his return to the lineup is still a few weeks away]. Zack Kassian has become a sensation with the fans due his consistent play and beauty of a shootout goal to WIN the first game for the Canucks. Yes, my Canucks made it to the win column and I was there to see it live in the arena with my mom and sisters. There is something special about being in the arena when your team earns their first WIN of the year.

You all know how much I love watching the game…and when the chance to see the Canucks play live at Rogers Arena came up…how could I say no?! January 23rd the Canucks played host to the Calgary Flames. We arrived and people scattered throughout the arena as slowly people made their way to their seats. Just before the clock struck 6:30 the Canucks and Flames hit the ice for pre-game warmups.

Canucks/Flames pre-game warm-ups January 23rd 2013

Canucks/Flames pre-game warm-ups January 23rd 2013. Do you recognize some faces?

As the warm-ups progressed, the seats around the arena began to fill up and the excitement level got louder. Warmups ended and the countdown to puck drop began. The lights went down and suddenly seats that were empty were filled….filled with fans like these:

Jess & Abs or as they call themselves #thetwins

Jess & Abs or as they call themselves #thetwins

abs & jess putting on their best #sedinery

abs & jess putting on their best #sedinery

the two biggest Canuck fan there is....my mom & me!

Not to be left out of the fun…the two biggest Canuck fan there are….my mom & me!

The puck finally drops and loud cheers ensue as both teams are off to the races. I should mention that prior to this game both teams were 0-2…and neither wanted to start the year 0-3. Each time the Canucks touched the puck, the crowd got louder and more excited anticipating the goals to be scored. The Canucks dominated the first period, holding Calgary at bay. Despite the Canucks best efforts, the period ended scoreless. As always when a period ends, people leave their seats for drink refills, snacks, and of course stopping at the Team store for the awesome fan deals! The tension in the building rose as the second period began and both teams exchanged goals. The fans in the stadium were quick to their feet when the Canucks scored goals two minutes apart from Raymond and Kassian. The energy in the building was electric. The tides turned then as the home team began a parade to the penalty box….giving Calgary two back to back 5-on-3 powerplays! Those powerplays led to Calgary tying up the game much to chagrin of the all the Canucks fans. The Flames fans in our section were ecstatic. The period ended the way it began…tied. The third period was intense with 18,000+ fans on the edge of their seats anticipating each pass, cheering for each rush and expressing distaste with every Calgary attempt to steal the game. There were ups and downs for both teams, but at the end of the day they were both desperate for the win. Every point is important in a shortened season and neither had the start to the year that they had hoped. The game ended tied….with everyone whispering that they hoped for a quick goal….which of course as you know did not happen. Overtime ended just as regulation had, tied at 2. Cue the shootout…and everyone person in the stands expressing their excitement or distaste for shootouts. And let me just say that while watching a shootout on TV is intense…the intensity level live is so much higher. 18,000+ fans standing in anticipation of each shooter….fingers crossed that the home team would prevail. The shootout began well with BURROWS scoring….and the crowd going wild! While the Canucks scored first….Calgary’s Tanguay also scored…tying the teams once more…forcing the sudden death shootout to continue to four and then five rounds. KASSIAN scored a beauty….and Glenn Close[**I mean Glencross] was stopped and pandemonium ensued….the entire arena was on their feet and screaming ZACK ZACK ZACK…and of course for Cory to who held his own stopping 4 of 5 in the shootout. It was an incredible game to go to…and be a part of the crowd seeing the Canucks win their first home game and first game overall of 2013. It was a very memorable game. I cannot wait to see what else the season holds for the team this season!! #GoCanucksGo

KASSIAN SCORES in the 5th round of the shootout, Schneider stops Glencross & the CANUCKS WIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

January 23rd. KASSIAN SCORES in the 5th round of the shootout, Schneider stops Glencross & the CANUCKS WIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! [WIN 3-2 in a shootout]

#winning #happyfans

HUGE WIN…so happy to have been in the crowd! #winning #happyfan

Now back to those band-wagoners. I don’t know about you, but I hate being called a band wagoner or asked if I’m back on the bandwagon now that the lockout is over. No, I am not back on the bandwagon, I was never on the bandwagon. I never stopped being a fan of the game. Was I a fan of the lockout? No, but I was still a fan of the game that is hockey. I also never stopped being a fan of the team just because they were not playing. So no, I am not back on the bandwagon…the bandwagon is reserved for those who cheer once in a while, only during playoffs, or those who cheer only when things are going well. This kid is fan through and through of my Canucks, win or lose, every game, every season.

As always, until next time, nuck said.

Sarah E.L.

P.S. Last night the Canucks had a rematch with the Ducks in Anaheim. My #Canucks played their first road game and dominated. They ruffled some feathers…and stole a victory from the home team by the score of 5-0! After being embarrassed in their home opener by the Ducks….the Canucks were looking to spoil the Ducks home opener and did just that. Heck…their powerplay was unbelievable as Anaheim got into some penalty trouble[ahem….Corey Perry]! #GoCanucksGo!

Back to you, Bob! Believe it ORR not…

If it’s not me of the Winter Classic trying to convince all the fans around the world that there just may be hope for the season yet…maybe you will at least consider hearing one of the all-time greatest defenseman to lace the skates voice his opinion on the matter. There is a statue of him near some arena in Boston. On a good night in some games, they say it seemed as though he could fly. His style and ability to move the puck from one end of the ice to the other almost effortlessly made him nearly unbeatable. He put the pedal to the metal in the setting of many records. How many defensemen in the league have won the Art Ross[most points in the regular season] more than once?! When was the last time a defenseman put up 100+ points let alone 139[the closest to that mark last season was Karlsson with 78 points]?? I am of course talking about Bobby Orr. Sincerely one of the greatest players to ever lace up the skates before his much too early retirement[at age 30!] due to injury. A career that was ended earlier than many had hoped…but in his 12 year career he amassed many NHL records….including 8 consecutive Norris trophies and 3 consecutive Hart trophies, 2 Art Ross Trophies, 2 Stanley Cups & 2 Conn Smythe Trophies. Not too mention that twice he scored the cup clinching goal. Bobby Orr knows hockey. Am I a fan of the Boston Bruins? NO. Will I ever be? NEVER. I am however a fan of Bobby Orr and the player that he was…how can one not admire his career an undeniable stats that by themselves nearly demand respect? Bobby Orr is one of the all-time greats that ever laced up the skates…and his opinion on the subject is one worth at least considering.

Bobby Orr was on the morning show “Breakfast Television”  Friday morning and offered up his professional opinion on the great debate that is the CBA debate. Orr said he absolutely “believes that there will be a season and that it would be outrageous not to have a season.” He also said that a fair deal can be reached and believes a new [and fair] CBA will be signed sooner than later. Orr also explained that is not only players and owners who are being affected, BUT the arena employees, businesses near the arenas, and minor league players who are losing their roster spots are feeling the hurt of the lockout.  Orr further stated his belief in the upcoming season by saying: “I think we’ll get most of the season in. Don and Gary are two smart guys, and there’s so much good in our game right now. There’s a lot at stake here. I think it can be done”

Believe it ORR not but I’m sticking by this Bruin[& only this Bruin] and his belief that a fair deal can be reached sooner rather than later and that we WILL get a season. It is too soon to cave to Bettman’s will and lose hope. There is still room for optimism. Just ask Bobby Orr and he will tell you that there will be a season…that is all.

As always, until next time, nuck said.

Sarah E.L.