Canucks Round Table (Vol.4)

Welcome to the latest edition of the official Nucksaid: Canucks Round Table! As you know, if you’ve followed my blog for awhile, one of my absolute favourite things is to connect with fellow hockey fans and to share our stories together. This new series will be bringing Canucks fans together from near and far to discuss all things Canucks as the season progresses. There’s a lot to be said about the team, personally, I love to also hear other fans perspectives, it helps me to see the team and the game in new ways.Hopefully you enjoy the ride with all of us! Shall we begin? Without further ado, I present to you the 4th edition of the Canucks Round Table feature on Nucksaid.

1)The Canucks are officially celebrating their 50th anniversary this season, which moment are you most looking forward to seeing celebrated?

Michael Coleman(@1MichaelColeman): All of them. It’s been a tough rebuild but we’ve slowly added the right pieces where I am finally comfortable having “expectations”. I feel we have upgraded every aspect of the game and the guys could really put something together if they gel and decide to play for one another. I feel like we have a chance to finally roll out three lines who can score and have pieces for a solid shut down line on the 4th.

(@tams3333): I am definitely most looking forward to Sedins’ retirement night!

Jenny Canuck(@getthepuckuout): It’s pretty hard to pick just ONE moment that I’m looking forward to. I am split between Burrows being inducted into the Ring of Honour or the Sedin jersey retirement night, but my heart’s leaning to the Dragon Slayer. Burrow’s grit and determination made him a fave for me. But ask me after the season ends, and my answer will be Pettersson leading us to the playoffs!

Eric Bailey(@EBailey16): The Sedin number retirement is the most exciting part. There have been many great players over the 50 years. Many players have wowed me with skill or determination but these two players were truly unique. I used to consider them each half a star until Henrik lead the league in points. Daniel repeating the feat, the next year, cemented that each was star player. The Canucks honour them this year and soon the league will too.

Brieann Knorr(@ItsBrieann): I’m very excited to see the Sedins jersey retirement! I think everyone is. It’s gonna be an emotional night as we honour the two greatest to play in a Canucks uniform. As well, I’m excited for Alex Burrows night! Can’t wait to see the Dragon Slayer get a place in Canucks history!

Suleiman Damji(@Suleiman Damji): I’m looking forward to the Sedins week, including their jersey retirement.

Marc Josef(@marc_josef): Watching Alex Burrows be inducted into the Ring of Honour. Burr is my all-time favourite Canuck. Played with his heart and soul for the city of Vancouver. 2011 playoffs…Dragon slaying goal is my all-time Canucks memory. Met him in person and he is a super nice, humble guy. I’ll be wearing my signed Burrows jersey that night!

Gabriella Smith(@wildestdreams_3): Definitely Sedin week. I also love that they’re honouring Bure, since he’s a big part of why I started following the Canucks in the first place!

Me(@nucksaid): Bo officially be awarded the captaincy(THAT WAS A MOMENT!). Pettersson, Boeser, Hughes & company continuing to grow together as a core. BURROWS night. SEDIN WEEK. Seeing a consistent swagger in the Canucks game play on a nightly basis, that could potentially get them back to the post-season.

2) The new season IS here, what are your expectations for the new season?

Michael Coleman(@1MichaelColeman): Anything less than the playoffs will be a bust. I anticipate winning at least one round in the post-season and having everyone whiplashed with “where did these guys come from?”

(@tams3333): I’m hoping fighting for a playoff spot, and clearing out some players to make space for the young guys.

Jenny Canuck(@getthepuckuout): The announcement of Bo Horvat as our next captain is something we’re all ready for. It symbolizes a new era for the Canucks and I couldn’t be more optimistic. Pettersson is elite and will grow even more. We have goal-tending, we have scoring, speed, attitude(Roussel and Ferland are two faves), and defence. We’ll just get better and better and better. I expect this to be the most exciting year since 2011 and don’t doubt it’ll be a great trip.

Eric Bailey(@EBailey16): I’ve watched videos, I’ve read articles that tell me the team is improved but not enough to make the playoffs. I am hoping for a playoff birth. While the season has started slow, I’m still optimistic, I’m expecting some overachieving – the playoffs.

Brieann Knorr(@ItsBrieann): I am expecting a better season than last year. I think playoffs are a big possibility with this team. I like the new additions to the blue line and Michael Ferland is gonna be a key piece for the grit and the goal scoring. I’m fairly optimistic that this season will be an exciting and a memorable one.

Suleiman Damji(@SuleimanDamji): The Canucks are going to have a great season this year and I could see them back in the playoffs.

Marc Josef(@marc_josef): I truly believe the Canucks will make the playoffs and end the 5-year drought. Pettersson hitting the 80 points mark. Boeser hitting 30 goals. Horvat taking the torch from Henrik as the Captain, officially ushering in the new era of Canucks hockey. Hughes showing us high end skating, intelligence and compete level on a nightly basis. Markstrom proving himself to be a Top 10 goalie in the NHL.

Gabriella Smith(@wildestdreams_3): I really thtink that the playoffs could happen this year. My current thoughts are that we make it to the first round, which would be a great experience to get our feet wet. I also look forward to seeing the young guys continue to grow! My expectation for myself are to go to at least 2 home and 1 away games, and watch as many as I can :).

Me(@nucksaid): My expectations for the season is the young players thriving together, the entire team finding a special chemistry together under the leadership of Bo. Pettersson finding yet another level as the season moves further along. Boeser hits 30 goals. Markstrom and Demko have a rock solid season together.

3) Pettersson lit up the l​eague last season, what do you think he does this season to follow up his memorable rookie season?

Michael Coleman(@1MichaelColeman): He’s a smart player. Reminds me of H.Sedin. I anticipate a steady increase over the next couple of years. If Ferland can find a groove on this top line, it will create space and confidence like Boeser and Petey have never had before in a Vancouver Uniform.

(@tams3333): I think people are going to be all over Petey this season and he is going to learn to fight through it. I’d predict a 70 point range.

Jenny Canuck(@getthepuckuout): Pettersson is so driven that he will always push himself to improve no matter what. He’s not only going to light it up but will play a game that most won’t believe. His vision, his accuracy…we have an elite player that will make us contenders for years.

Eric Bailey(@EBailey16): I’m looking for Pettersson to continue. All the projections I read suggested 30+ goals and 70-80 points. That sounds good to me. The real achievement is doing this while teams are matching against him.

Brieann Knorr(@ItsBrieann): I think Pettersson will have a good season. I don’t want to place any expectations on him as he’s got a lot on his plate already.

Suleiman Damji(@SuleimanDamji): I think that Pettersson is going to have an even better year than he did last season.

Marc Josef(@marc_josef): 30 goals, 50 assists. Lead by example on a nightly basis with his compete level, tenacity and hunger to get better.

Gabriella Smith(@wildestdreams_3): I’m looking forward to seeing what he can with a (fingers crossed) healthy season, since he did have the knee injury and concussion last year. I think he’ll continue to have steady and solid production while dazzling us as only he can.

Me(@nucksaid): Pettersson is a special player. Every time I get the chance to see him play, his skill takes my breath away. It’s unbelievable what he can do at this early stage of his career. We’ve just begun to see what he can do, as he continues to push himself, I think we see him hit many milestones over the years as his career progresses. How lucky are we to get to witness it?

4)Quinn Hughes gave us a glimpse of what he could do in the final 5 games last season. Will he challenge his brother Jack for the Calder?

Michael Coleman(@1MichaelColeman): When Boeser had his first season, we were warned, “Don’t expect too much! He may not even make the team.” When Petey joined the team, we were told once again, “Don’t expect too much. He’ll be a winger at best but won’t see any real centre minutes for some time.” I am starting to think the experts are guessers. I, not unlike what I predicted with the other two mentioned on this one, expect Hughes to be a world class talent and turn heads right away. I also anticipate a rejuvenated Tanev who will play like we haven’t seen in some time.

(@tams3333): I think that Quinn will do well offensively but need some time to figure out how to be in the dirty areas defensively and it will be an adjustment. I think he will need some time and patience.

Jenny Canuck(@getthepuckuout): Hughes’ moves…that man has the fanciest feet. Man, can he skate! He might just challenge Jack as he’s got experience Jack doesn’t even though it is only a handful of games. I think he’ll have more confidence because of his teammates too. I think I’d even bet money on it.

Eric Bailey(@EBailey16): Quinn is getting his minutes and the points will come as the team starts scoring. He will do well and get hype. I expect him to be in the conversation but it is rare for defenders to win. His competition is really high, so I have my doubts about him winning. If he can just get nominated, that will be an amazing run of draft picks.

Brieann Knorr(@ItsBrieann): I honestly think so! I think that storyline will be amazing to follow. Even if he doesn’t win it, it would be nice to have a Canuck as a finalist for 3 years in a row.

Suleiman Damji(@SuleimanDamji): Yes, I could definitely see Quinn Hughes challenge his brother for the Calder trophy.

Marc Josef(@marc_josef): Yes, absolutely, Quinn should be in the conversation for the Calder by the end of the season. Defensemen are always at a disadvantage for winning this trophy compared to fowards/centres because goals are always valued higher than assists.

Gabriella Smith(@wildestdreams_3): I believe Quinn will definitely be in the running for the Calder. He’s so very talented, but I’ve also gotta think that there’s some element of brotherly rivalry and competition with Jack going on as well!

Me(@nucksaid): Quinn Hughes. Another special player. The kid CAN SKATE…his puck handling skills are fun to watch, he’s got incredible confidence, and how about that rocket of a shot from the point? WHAT A GOAL for his first ever in the league! I think it’ll be a fun back and forth to watch between him and Jack as well as the rest of this season’s rookie class. It’d be quite something to see a Canuck nominated for the third year in a row IF it happens!

5) Henrik and Daniel will further cement their place in Canucks history books, when they have their jerseys retired during Sedin week in February. What was/is your favourite Sedin memory? Why?

Michael Coleman(@1MichaelColeman): Their entire journey as Canucks. I’ve been a fan from day one. Their “dancer” commercial may stand out as my favourite moment however when the other NHLers ordered “twins”. LOL.

(@tams3333): The Viking clap was very special and their last home game. It could not have been any better.

Jenny Canuck(@getthepuckuout): Haha, my fave fun moment was Henrik Sedin and Dustin Brown getting tangled up, Brown’s face right at Henrik’s butt…it still makes immature me laugh! BUT my ultimate fave moment was the last game. I cried. The Sedins were ours for their entire career. They are gentlemen, kind and community driven. There is so much to love and respect about them, I picked the last game for all those Sedin things that happened during it. 22 and 33 could not have shown up more on the board or the clock. And the cycling for the overtime goal from Daniel…excuse me a minute…tearing up again.

Eric Bailey(@EBailey16): My favourite moment was the game when Henrik took the scoring title. An amazing touch/pass/redirect to Daniel who does an amazing between the legs shot! This accomplished something that no Canuck ever did before. This marked for the league that the twins were themselves, stars. This play is just a magical sequence for me.

Brieann Knorr(@ItsBrieann): My favourite moment is between two moments. The game when Hank sealed his Art Ross trophy and the Sedins final home game. Both stand out as amazing moments in their careers and highlights for the fans.

Suleiman Damji(@SuleimanDamji): My favourite Sedin moment was when Henrik reached the 1000 career points milestone.

Marc Josef(@marc_josef): Henrik Sedin’s quadruple OT goal against the Dallas Stars in the 2007 playoffs. I wanted to go to bed. lol

A very close second is Daniel Sedin’s OT winner against the Arizona Coyotes for their final Canucks home game because my family and I witnessed it live. I imagine that’s a pretty close feeling to winning the Stanley Cup based on the fan’s reactions of joy at Rogers Arena.

Gabriella Smith(@wildestdreams_3): I think it’s just the legacy that they have already, rather than one memory in particular. In my mind they’re still very much the heart and soul of the team and I’m glad that the jersey retirement is happening to be a tangible reminder of this.

Me(@nucksaid): OI VEY. How do I simply pick JUST one moment? The Sedins have defined SO many of my years as a fan but I’ll say a few. Henrik’s quadruple OT goal vs. Dallas in 2007. Daniel’s between the legs goal vs. Calgary that sealed Henrik’s Art Ross in 2010. Henrik Sedin penalty shot goal on MY birthday in 2013. Henrik scoring his 1000th career point vs. LU(that was all kinds of special to see LIVE). But perhaps my most favourite is torn between when I finally MET them AND when my sister and I had our seats upgraded for their FINAL home game and were able to witness that FINAL act of Sedinery from right behind the class. BEST seats I’ve ever had and a moment that I’ll remember every second of, for always. (***Their jersey retirement will definitely be added to this list when it happens).

6) Any bold predictions for this next season for the Canucks or the league in general?

Michael Coleman(@1MichaelColeman): Canucks win at least one round in the post-season, possibly two!.

(@tams3333): I think our boys will be a bubble team for the playoffs and once they have a taste, there will be no looking back.

Jenny Canuck(@getthepuckuout): Yes. We are going to gel and improve in leaps and bounds by Christmas and make it into the playoffs. We all know once that happens, ANYTHING can happen!

Eric Bailey(@EBailey16): My hopeful optimistic take that the Canucks will be a playoff team is as bold as I get. As I learn more about advanced stats and read different evaluations, I mostly stop expecting the unlikely things to happen, I understand better why my team struggles but I have learned to hope for a season of anomalies, to over achieve. I hope for a PDO that is unsustainable to last a season. #GLCPC #gocanucksgo

Brieann Knorr(@ItsBrieann): Canucks make the post-season.

Suleiman Damji(@SuleimanDamji): The Canucks make it back into the playoffs.

Marc Josef(@marc_josef): The Canucks will qualify for the playoffs and have TWO All-Stars(Pettersson and Boeser) be voted for the All-Star Game. General league prediction would be…the Maple Leafs missing the playoffs!

Gabriella Smith(@wildestdreams_3): I’m not that good with predictions to be honest! I’m definitely #teamplayoffs thougth, so I’m just going to say we can and hopefully will make it this year. AND it that happens, I predict a home game ticket purchase on my part ;).

Me(@nucksaid): The Canucks make the post-season along with another team or two that make a return to the post-season.

That’s it for this edition of the Canucks Round Table! If you’d like to take part next time or down the road as we work our way through the off season, OR if you have a question that you’d like included in the NEXT round table; find me on twitter(@nucksaid) or send me an e-mail(nucksaid@gmail.com). Special THANK-YOU to each and every person that took the time to be a part of this Round Table! [And if you’re not already following this group on twitter, please find their twitter handles above!]

As always, until next time nuck said.

Sarah E.L.

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Are You Ready to BROCK and Roll?

Now that the deal is officially signed and Brock Boeser is officially returned to the Canucks, it’s time to take a different approach as I often do, than what I’ve seen making the rounds on social media the last few days.

Where do I begin? Here goes:

Dear Brock,

First, things first, let me say: congratulations on the new contract extension and welcome back!

I can still recall the 2015 NHL Draft and remember thinking there was no way the Canucks would be lucky enough to draft you at 23rd BUT then it happened! Shortly after the draft that year, the Canucks hosted a summer event where you and many of their prospects were in attendance and meeting the fans. You probably don’t remember this BUT when we met, first thing I said was “Welcome to the NHL”, and you told me “Thank-you, but I haven’t made it just yet.”, to which I said, “Well, I have a feeling that it won’t be long before you’re in the league FULL TIME.”

And here we are 4 years later, and you’re heading into your THIRD full season in the league. From a kid who didn’t know the kind of impact he could have to a Calder finalist, to a sensational player on the ice to an even better person off of the ice.

Maybe you didn’t realize the impact you would have or could have when you made it to the NHL but it’s been incredible to watch from the sidelines. There was a lot of anticipation among Canucks fans when you made your debut as we all waited to see how your game would translate to the league. Translate it did, scoring in your debut and then taking it up a notch in your rookie year giving fans a HUGE surge of hope with the ease of which you carry with you on the ice. (That hat trick against Pittsburgh on home ice was absolutely incredible to witness). And can we mention your NHL All-Star MVP status?!

It’s one thing to have favourite players who are great players but it’s something incredibly special when that talent is combined with an even bigger heart that sees beyond the game. Canucks fans are incredibly lucky to be able to witness your career from the beginning. So much more is yet to come.

It couldn’t have been easy to not only be waiting on your contract this summer but to also be worried about your dad’s health. Please know that as much as fans wanted you to come back to the team, we are ALL rooting for Duke, he’s a warrior and definitely deserved to be your priority. Some things are bigger than hockey.

Re-signing with the Canucks is a great moment for the franchise. Playing in this league is no easy feat but you’ve endured a lot along the way to get here, but there’s a place for you to leave an indelible mark and inspire so many more to follow your footsteps. From a top ranked prospect to a rookie taking the league by storm to hitting another stride with Pettersson to becoming an ambassador within the community.

If I could give you one bit of advice, it would be to not let the negative narratives bring you down, instead allow them to push you to prove them wrong. Over the course of your career, there will be good days and there will be tough days, but over the course of your career up to this point, you’ve already proven you can handle all of it. If you ever need an example of who to look to, look no further than Bo Horvat who is walking the path along side you, but also look back to the careers of Henrik and Daniel who defined the epitome of what it takes to endure in the NHL through the highs and the lows.

You came into this league, a kid from Minnesota living his dream and made this city that was beginning to spark again and ignited their hope with BROCK-star moves.

Here’s to the upcoming season about to start that will feature many BROCK this way moments and the continuation of a very promising future for you and the Vancouver Canucks!

Sarah E.L.

True Blue 2019 (Vol.4)

It’s that time of year again at NUCK SAID. Even as the off-season winds down, there’s still time for another edition of True Blue 2019. As has become an annual tradition that began in summer 2014, it’s time to put the spot light on YOU the fans and YOUR hockey stories! This is open to ALL Vancouver Canucks AND Utica Comets fans!

What does that mean? It means featuring YOU, the fans. As we count down to the new season around the corner, it is a time to share your Canucks/hockey stories and how you became a fan of this team, the game and what keeps drawing you in with no looking back.

Whether you’ve been fan your whole life, or only a little while, whether you grew up in British Columbia or across the country or in the USA or across the globe, I would love to feature YOU and YOUR story as a part of this year’s series. We all have a different story as to how this game and the team captured us, but through it all we are all connected. Fan stories and experiences are some of my favourite hockey stories to share with you and since I asked for your stories, I also shared a part of my story.

If you’d like more details on how YOU can be featured in True Blue 2019, simply send me a message on twitter (@nucksaid) OR send me an e-mail to: nucksaid@gmail.com with the subject line: TRUE BLUE 2019.

Without further ado, I present to you the 4th edition of True Blue 2019.

This is Gabriella’s True Blue story in her own words:

I’m going to start this with a kind of sappy quote from ‘The Fault in Our Stars’; “I fell in love the way you fall asleep, first slowly, then all at once.”

When I first got into hockey, Bure was my hero(despite the fact that he was already retired at that point). Yep, I was the girl who tried to teach herself Russian, partly because of him. Cool, да?

I watched with pride as the Canucks retired his jersey, and kept an eye on the team because of him. My first NHL game was at Rogers Arena in February 2016. Even though at that point, I wasn’t yet there as a Canucks fan, I was in absolute awe of the arena, the atmosphere…to the point that I got lost looking for my seat because I was giddy with joy.

I took a few more trips to Vancouver to watch the Wild play, (they are my other love). And gradually, something was happening at this point.

And then…I got a new job. And at this job, I bonded with a coworker, a native Minnesotan. This coworker would tell me about growing up playing high school hockey coached by Boeser’s late grandfather. He’d be so proud of him, he said. At lunch breaks, I’d show him the latest Boeser highlights. I became a fan of The Flow.

My next trip to Vancouver was ill-timed. Just 3 days before I left for Vancouver, Brock’s season was ended by a horrifying clash with the boards.

Sometime during the summer, I ended up with a Boeser jersey. I still didn’t consider myself a Canucks fan per se…or at least I didn’t yet know it.

In October 2018, I traveled to Vancouver yet again, Boeser jersey in tow. My first game saw both him and Petey return from injury. I proudly wore my jersey, despite a shutout and something started to click.

And then, I met Ben Hutton, It was the most random of occurrences…I was shopping in the team store(man, that place has gotten a TON of my money) and lo and behold, there he was. I went and asked him for a selfie. He took pity on my struggle to reach high enough(the guy is 14 inches taller than me) and asked a friend who was with him to take the picture. His kindness captured my heart. Canuck or not, I will always be a fan.

From then on, I considered myself a fan. I started passionately following games and planning more trips. I’ll never forget meeting Brock Boeser outside of Staples Centre before the Valetine’s Day game. He was kind and genuine. My selfie is blurry from my shaky hands. It took awhile to calm down, only for my heart rate to go back up during a thrilling shootout victory, in which Brock scored the winner. A few weeks later, I again ran into him in the team store(it is truly “where the players shop!”).

My Canucks journey has intertwined with my endeavor of playing hockey myself. I began to consider playing goalie right about the time that Thatcher Demko was called up. He inspired and continues to inspire me as I to stop pucks. When I finally got to see him play in person, I wrote a sign telling him that he was my inspiration. I hoped he’d see it. He not only did but he grabbed a puck to toss to me. Sadly, it missed. He shrugged, I shrugged…hoping he knew I was thankful that he tried. But it didn’t end there…he picked another puck and this one hit its mark. I will forever remember this as one of the best birthdays I have ever experienced. The icing on the cake (no pun intended) was seeing the moment captured on the Canucks Twitter.

This team–and–city–has stolen my heart. I’m already planning several trips for this upcoming season, with training camp being the first highlight. Vancouver feels like a second home. I can’t wait to see where this journey takes me.

-Gabriella.

Special thanks to Gabriella for sharing your story with all of us! I look forward to hearing all about your adventures from Training Campand hopefully see you at the rink when the puck drops on the season!

As always, until next time, nuck said.

Sarah E.L.

 

Vancouver Canucks: Looking Ahead

Now that it’s September, that means it’s time to take a closer look at what’s coming up for the team as the season edges ever closer.

First things first: the Captaincy Conundrum. Will they or won’t they name a captain for the first time since Henrik Sedin retired in April 2018? It’s true that there are a few worthy candidate to follow in his footsteps, from Edler to Tanev to Horvat to Boeser to Pettersson. BUT there is ONE that stands out among the crowd: Bo Horvat. It’s one of a few things that the majority of Canucks fans agree on. It seems to be a matter of timing, so we will see what/when things unfold as the season nears. Mind you if they do name someone else the captain, I will still support the one who is chosen.

The Elias Pettersson factor. How will he perform in his sophomore season to follow up his Calder winning rookie season? From the work he has done to get himself ready over the summer, he looks poised to have a big year. Once the puck finally drops, we will get to see exactly how big of a next step he takes.

Quinn Hughes. We got a glimpse of what he can do over the final five games of the 2018-2019 season, and it was incredible to say the least. Can we talk about the OT shifts between him, Pettersson and Boeser? Think back on THAT magic vs LA and think about THAT for a FULL season. Are you ready?

Return of the dragon slayer. Need I say more? What a story Alexandre Burrows paved from a ball hockey player, to the QMJHL, to the AHL, to the NHL and a first line winger with the Sedins and knack for scoring timely goals. A versatile player who was able to play wherever he was asked and scored some of the biggest goals in franchise history. Pure determination and heart personified. Ring of Honour induction takes place on December 3, 2019.

SEDINERY will always be epic. It was never a question that Henrik and Daniel would be honoured with their jerseys being retired, it was merely a question of timing. A full week of celebration for two beyond deserving individuals. Class acts on and off of the ice. Legends that have forever left an indelible mark on the franchise. And in true Sedin fashion, as they have done everything in their careers, their jerseys being retired will be an honour that they receive together. #33 and #22 will go up to the rafters officially on February 12, 2020.

To think that this is only a taste of the excitement that’s to come this season. Lots to look forward to as every day gets us even closer to puck drop. Rookie camp followed by training camp and preseason AND then the fun BEGINS!

As always, until next time, nuck said.

Sarah E.L.

True Blue 2019(Vol.3)

It’s that time of year again at NUCK SAID. Now that it’s officially the Vancouver Canucks off-season: True Blue 2019 is here. As has become an annual tradition that began in summer 2014, it’s time to put the spot light on YOU the fans and YOUR hockey stories! This is open to ALL Vancouver Canucks AND Utica Comets fans!

What does that mean? It means featuring YOU, the fans on the blog ALL summer long.  As we count down to the new season around the corner, it is time to share your Canucks/hockey stories and how you became a fan of this team, the game and what keeps drawing you in with no looking back.

I’m calling out to ALL Vancouver Canucks AND Utica Comets fans to share their stories. Whether you’ve been fan your whole life, or only a little while, whether you grew up in British Columbia or across the country or in the USA or across the globe, I would love to feature YOU and YOUR story as a part of this year’s series. We all have a different story as to how this game and the team captured us, but through it all we are all connected. Fan stories and experiences are some of my favourite hockey stories to share with you and since I’m asking for your stories, I also shared a part of my story.

If you’d like more details on how YOU can be featured in True Blue 2019, simply send me a message on twitter (@nucksaid) OR send me an e-mail to: nucksaid@gmail.com with the subject line: TRUE BLUE 2019.

Without further ado, I present to you the 3RD edition of True Blue 2019.

This is Brieann’s True Blue story in her own words:

“So I guess you could say that I’ve been a Canucks fan my whole life. I don’t remember a time where I wasn’t watching hockey. I remember my love for the team started in 2003 at 8 years old. I got my first ever jersey and proudly wore it to the Canucks training camp in 2003. This was the first time that I have ever seen the Canucks in person and it was SO awesome! I met Dan Cloutier and many other Canucks. It was amazing to see many of the Canucks I have seen on TV, now play in front of me. The same thing happened in 2007, when the Canucks came back for their training camp! This time around it was even more special, as I got yo meet my favourite player in Markus Naslund. I remember he walked out the door, missed my sister and I, looked back, saw us and signed our stuff. I was beyond happy! I also got to meet LU as he was just traded to the team the year before. 

As the years went on, I loved hockey more, but had yet to go to a game. That all changed when I was 16 as my parents got me tickets for a game! It was the second home game back after the Olympics on March 14, 2010. The funniest part of this story is the creator of this blog, Sarah, was at this same game and we hadn’t met yet! I remember she had a really cool sign that she had made that I loved! The game was awesome! Henrik Sedin became the all-time assist leader during the game and it was so nice to see them beat Calgary. It made me love the game more and I wanted to see them play live again. 

I got to see the Canucks again before the 2010-11 season as they had their training camp near my hometown again. My dad and I got up at 4:00 in the morning to drive to the arena as it was about an hour and a half away. We were one of the first people at the arena when the doors opened. Again, it was an amazing experience getting to see the team again. I had gotten a few signatures from different players but I really wanted to get Henrik Sedin’s as I had his jersey and he was favourite player after Naslund retired. I ended up not getting his signature at the arena and I was crushed. I thought that was my one and only chance to meet him ever. I asked my dad if we could go to the hotel they were staying at and as were pulling in, I looked out and saw the Sedins standing there with Erhoff and Samuelsson! No one was with them! I ran over and got my autograph! You could not wipe the smile off of my face. 

2011 was the season that should have been us. It was the perfect season and you couldn’t have written it any differently heading into the playoffs. We all know what happened though and through it, I loved the team more. To see people come together to cheer for a single team, gave me so much excitement and I have a feeling that the tears we shed for 2011 will turn into tears of joy soon. 

I went to college and ended up in enemy territory. As we all know, being a Canucks fan anywhere is tough, but it was especially hard in Calgary. Luckily I made some friends online who loved the Canucks and could keep the passion alive for me. It was kind of fun being a fan there and I got to see the Canucks play while I was in college. I remember being decked out from head to toe in blue and green because I didn’t want anyone to think I was cheering for the Flames! 

When I moved back home, I continued to love the Canucks and watched them as much as I could. It wasn’t until I turned 23 that I went to Vancouver again and saw a game at Rogers Arena. It turned out to be Burrow’s last game as a Canuck. I always remember Burr as being a phenomenal player and he rightly deserves the Ring of Honour celebration he’s receiving. 

Over the years, the Canucks started doing the Young Stars tournament and I went to as many years as I could. My friends and I would always try to meet some of the players and to see who the young talent was on some of the other teams as well. One year, we had just finished watching the game and were getting ready to leave, there was an elderly man going up the stairs in front of me and he was having a bit of trouble. This kid, who was in a suit, was helping him up the stairs. I wanted to thank him for his knid gesture and I was looking at him and couldn’t figure our how I knew him, so no words came out. As we were walking away, my sister leaned over and said “was that Brock Boeser?!”

Years later, I finally to meet Brock Boeser as the Canucks had their pre-season game in Kelowna last year. It was a great moment as he signed MY jersey! I also got to meet a certain Swedish superstar by the name of Elias Pettersson! He was really nice and it was amazing to see his amazing season. 

The last incredible thing that I have done was attend the 2019 NHL Draft with Sarah! It was amazing to see the draft process and see the craziness of the draft floor. 

I’m excited to see what the future holds for this team. I think we could win a championship but only time will tell. We have a great core and we are getting some good pieces to play with them. Canucks fans should be very excited. 

Thanks for reading, 

Brieann.”

—-Thank-you, to both Brieann for sharing YOUR True Blue story with all of us! [I still think it’s funny how we were both at that game years ago before our paths ever crossed AND now you’re one of my BEST friends]. AND, if you’re not already following her on twitter, what are you waiting for: @BrieannKnorr.

Stay tuned as there are some more great stories lined up to be shared this year but there’s always room for more of you! If you’d like more details on how YOU can be featured in True Blue 2019, simply send me a message on twitter (@nucksaid) OR send me an e-mail to: nucksaid@gmail.com with the subject line: TRUE BLUE 2019.

As always, until next time, nuck said.

Sarah E.L.

True Blue 2019 (Vol.2)

It’s that time of year again at NUCK SAID. Now that it’s officially the Vancouver Canucks off-season: True Blue 2019 is here. As has become an annual tradition that began in summer 2014, it’s time to put the spot light on YOU the fans and YOUR hockey stories! This is open to ALL Vancouver Canucks AND Utica Comets fans!

What does that mean? It means featuring YOU, the fans on the blog ALL summer long.  As we count down to the new season around the corner, it is time to share your Canucks/hockey stories and how you became a fan of this team, the game and what keeps drawing you in with no looking back.

I’m calling out to ALL Vancouver Canucks AND Utica Comets fans to share their stories. Whether you’ve been fan your whole life, or only a little while, whether you grew up in British Columbia or across the country or in the USA or across the globe, I would love to feature YOU and YOUR story as a part of this year’s series. We all have a different story as to how this game and the team captured us, but through it all we are all connected. Fan stories and experiences are some of my favourite hockey stories to share with you and since I’m asking for your stories, I will also share a part of my story.

If you’d like more details on how YOU can be featured in True Blue 2019, simply send me a message on twitter (@nucksaid) OR send me an e-mail to: nucksaid@gmail.com with the subject line: TRUE BLUE 2019.

AND in case you missed VOL.1 of True Blue 2019: VOLUME 1

Without further ado, here’s the 2nd edition of True Blue 2019: My story.

“It’s only fair that as I am asking all of you to share your story with me, that I also share mine with all of you.

Growing up, in our house, watching hockey aside from the odd game here or there or during the Olympics/Stanley Cup Final, but overall was not a common practice. It was always kind of on my periphery until something clicked around high school. It was a neighbour and long time family friend who initially sparked my love for the Canucks and taught me much of the terminology and rhythms of the game.

There was a game on, and a few players caught my eye; the trio of Markus Naslund, Brendan Morrison & Todd Bertuzzi otherwise known as “The West Coast Express” as I would learn, who played together with a finesse and speed. In that same game there was a particular duo who also took me by surprise with their insane ability to read plays to one another with a seamless no look communication: Henrik and Daniel Sedin. Even in their early playing days, they had something special whenever they played together.

And suddenly I was watching every single game, learning all the stats not just of the Canucks but stats from around the league and simply learning all I could about the game itself. And then the lockout hit..but after THAT, those Sedins elevated their game to another level, the likes of Bieksa, Edler, Kesler and Burrows emerged, Luongo joined the team and there was NO going back.

I found that I really enjoyed talking about the game any time I met another kindred spirit who also loved the game. Just ask my family, I was driving them crazy with my hockey talk. And when they realized it wasn’t a passing fad, I was gifted a Luongo jersey for my birthday(the jersey count is currently at 9…soon to be 10). It was my absolute favourite game day attire for as long as he was on the team and still makes an appearance each season as I’ll always be #teamLU.

Watching the games were great BUT when I finally got to see my first LIVE game, it took my love of hockey up another level. It was pure magic from the pre-game warm-ups to the anthems, to puck drop to final buzzer.

There’s something truly spectacular about watching a game from start to finish with 18,000+ other fans. We all become one it that arena, and it’s unbelievable.

From the start, my love of the game of the game and the team has only grown exponentially. From merely watching the odd game to never missing a game to making it an annual tradition of attending a game on my birthday to becoming a partial season ticket holder, it’s been an unforgettable transition.

I’ve been incredibly blessed over the years from experiencing attending games to meeting some of my all-time favourite players, but I have to say that the connection I’ve made with fellow Canucks/hockey fans over the years has been one of the best parts. Whether it’s been through simply being a fan, or via this blog/social media, connecting with other fans over this game that connects all of us will always be something that I’ll hold dear. I know that hockey fans won’t always agree about certain things but that’s okay, in fact many times, it acts as a way for me to see the game or their team from a fresh perspective. I love seeing the different ways that each person’s team and the game itself draws them in.

For me, it was slow and then all at once, hockey became so much more than just a game to me and the Canucks have become more than just a team.

Here’s to the season just around the bend and seeing Pettersson & Co. thrive when the puck drops in October and seeing the Sedins have their jerseys retired in February!–S.E.L.”

As always, until next time, nuck said.

Sarah E.L.

True Blue 2019 (Vol.1)

It’s that time of year again at NUCK SAID. Now that it’s officially the Vancouver Canucks off-season: True Blue 2019 is here. As has become an annual tradition that began in summer 2014, it’s time to put the spot light on YOU the fans and YOUR hockey stories! This is open to ALL Vancouver Canucks AND Utica Comets fans!

What does that mean? It means featuring YOU, the fans on the blog ALL summer long.  As we count down to the new season around the corner, it is time to share your Canucks/hockey stories and how you became a fan of this team, the game and what keeps drawing you in with no looking back.

I’m calling out to ALL Vancouver Canucks AND Utica Comets fans to share their stories. Whether you’ve been fan your whole life, or only a little while, whether you grew up in British Columbia or across the country or in the USA or across the globe, I would love to feature YOU and YOUR story as a part of this year’s series. We all have a different story as to how this game and the team captured us, but through it all we are all connected. Fan stories and experiences are some of my favourite hockey stories to share with you and since I’m asking for your stories, I will also share a part of my story.

Without further ado, here’s the FIRST edition of True Blue 2019 featuring two fans and their True Blue stories in their own words.

MICHAEL COLEMAN: “I grew up in the 70s/80s and street hockey is what we did every day after school. Sticks thrown into the middle of the street, tossed randomly into two piles to divvy up the teams. “Second Captain, First Pick!” was another way to select teams and to this day, I still haven’t found value in being the FIRST Captain with the second pick. Next was to select who you were going to be. I was always the pride of Powell River, #7, Gary Lupul! Gary was 5’7″ and I was chasing my gigantic peak of 5’6″ and always found his play inspiring. Coincidentally, another favourite player later in life was #7 Cliff Ronning. Cliffy checks in right between Lup and myself. I recently played one of the 7 dwarfs on a show for ABC called ‘Once Upon a Time’ and was #33 on the call sheet. It always felt like an homage to my first favourite player (Lupul) and my most recent favourite player (H. Sedin).

We’d play as soon as we got home and tossed the school bags in the front door, would break for intermission to eat dinner and go back out and play again until it was time for bed. We didn’t have the internet, most games weren’t televised, we had to use our imagination and we connected to these heroes differently.

As I grew older and found myself in a position of pseudo-popularity due to the various character roles that I’ve played on television and cartoons; I was able to give back more to my community and get involved with some really cool people. One such gentleman is Robin Wyss who looks after the Canucks Alumni. We were able to raise some money for the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre and I was able to skate with some of my childhood heroes. It also provided me with the unique opportunity to meet Bob Lenarduzzi and Carl Valentine and we were able to create an annual charity event with the Vancouver Whitecaps and Hollywood North.

The honourable, mindful, and involved professional athletes that the city of Vancouver has been able to attract is mind blowing. We have been gifted with incredible talents with a strong sense of community and charity. They also have been very respectful, kind and interactive with their fan base.

I love the athletes that we’ve been able to attract to this city and I am grateful for the efforts that they put in to be a part of this community. This extends to the staff and executives and everyone involved. The culture of a professional sports franchise in Vancouver is something admirable.

The Canucks and Whitecaps have become somewhat of a religious experience for me. I am proud to be connected to these teams, these sports, these fan bases. They give me a sense of hope, a sense of community, and a sense of honour.

Becoming a season ticket holder a few years back has been a proud commitment to “my church” and I love the community that it creates. I am looking forward to this next chapter of the team.

#WeAreAllCanucks

Sincerely, Michael Coleman.”

ERIC BAILEY: “My Canucks journey is a long one. I moved to Victoria in 1977. I played street hockey and ice hockey. Skating was such fun that when it came time to choose between school activities(skating or swimming), I would choose to take the skating lessons. I loved to skate and playing hockey. At the same time, with the milk delivery came these larger hockey cards of Canucks players. I didn’t collect them like collectors do but I did collect them, I remember them being in my toy box.

Then in 1982, came the cup run. I didn’t know too many people on the team (despite having the cards) but I knew the name King Richard. From then on, the Canucks were my team. In high school, I played hockey for my high school team. My practice jersey was the Flying V in black. I always wanted the yellow one.

I graduated from high school in 1988. That same year is the first year that I was at all aware of who the Canucks drafted. Trevor Linden was drafted and he wore my number. I discovered his birthday is only a few days before mine. I followed the Canucks more closely at this point. I also discovered and played a statistics based hockey game. I got a Pavel Bure poster. Petr Nedved being drafted was also exciting as I had heard of his story before he joined the Canucks.

1994 was different. The Canucks were a big fast, exciting physical team. My wife and I got married the previous Christmas. As the playoffs started, we both supported the Canucks. Her team was in a different conference so there was very little chance of us having our teams face each other. We cheered against the Flames, believing in the Canucks. I don’t remember the Dallas series. I remember the Maple Leafs though. We had many of their fans around us. My wife and I argued that the Canucks were bigger, and this would ultimately give them the series. We were right. Then, the impossible happened. My team face my wife’s team. My hero versus her hero. While my team lost, it was SO close. Our marriage survived this event but we don’t talk about THAT Ranger team.

When Messier joined the team, I bought my wife(a Messier fan), a Messier doll in a Canucks uniform. While we united on the team, we did not feel the same way about Messier after this time.

I followed the Canucks passionately until the Bertuzzi event happened. I found myself being very negative and getting angry about things not going the Canucks way in playoff games. I found the same thoughts creeping into my mind that promoted the thinking(the code) like that during the Bertuzzi-Moore incident. I did not like thinking that way. I withdrew from following closely(a strike also happened during this time). 

2009-10 and 2010-11, I was following more closely again but I tried to find ways of not being as upset when they lost (because of bad reffing?). The hype at the beginning of the 2010-11 season captured me again. We got an elliptical machine and I ran on it during the playoffs. While the Canucks were dominant during the regular season, round one with the hawks was tense. The Nashville series seemed to reawaken the way the Canucks dominated in the regular season. The Sharks series was short and sweet, leaving 4 wins to become the champions as was predicted. My son and I flew halfway across the country to take in game 2 of the Stanley Cup Finals. My wife, who is awesome and amazing (added after her proofreading for me) bought me those tickets. Is that penance for the whole Messier debacle? 

After that season, the magic was gone. Injuries, another shortened season and I found myself disconnected from the games again. However the last few seasons, I’ve gotten back into watching games. I’m enjoying interacting with other fans. Reading about the team and rediscovering hope.I like hockey best when the team plays well and I remain positive. #GLCPC 

Eric.”

—-Thank-you, to both Michael & Eric for sharing YOUR True Blue stories with all of us! If you’re not already following them on twitter, what are you waiting for: @1MichaelColeman & @EBailey16.

Stay tuned as there are some more great stories lined up to be shared this year but there’s always room for more of you! If you’d like more details on how YOU can be featured in True Blue 2019, simply send me a message on twitter (@nucksaid) OR send me an e-mail to: nucksaid@gmail.com with the subject line: TRUE BLUE 2019.

As always, until next time, nuck said.

Sarah E.L.