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The Canucks Don’t Suck, The Coyotes…. EXIST!

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The Vancouver Canucks were eliminated in game six of the Western Conference semi-finals on May 11th.

That’s a sentence that literally could have been written last season and still been 100% factual.

Pictured: A frustrating relationship for 'Nucks fans.

On May 13th last year, I was headed to the airport in Vancouver to fly the 45 minutes back to my hometown of Kelowna, after a three day vacation with my college roommates.  The day before we had ran into a big number of the Canucks downtown, day-drinking just like us, but they were black, blue and looking depleted.  And here I was the very next day listening to sports-talk radio abuse them.

To make the Conference semi’s, you have to advance past 22 teams, yet their sports personalities were trying to figure out who to nail to the cross first.  Apparently Luongo was the easiest target at the time (as he probably is today).

The Canucks growing ever-growing fan base has been treated to some great hockey lately

But Canucks fans, relax.  You have a good team that’s a serious contender – so much so that legitimate hockey personalities picked your boys to win the Cup (just being healthy might be enough to see round three next year, then who knows).  Most fans (Oilers, Wild, Flames, Leafs, oh I dunno, ISLANDERS) would kill to have the type of year your boys had.  You’re getting spoiled with great hockey, and acting like you’re watching the Blue Jackets.

You ran into a Hawks team with too many weapons to stop while using a d-corps that was probably eating a pre-game meal of spaghetti and percaset.  Your boy Lu made enough big saves and your forwards scored enough goals to win… there was just nothing left in the back tank.  Let’s be honest – it didn’t look like Salo was exactly having a ball out there. (*recycling is good for the environment)

Kudos to the Hawks, who look pretty damn dangerous going forward.

*****

Moments after getting a text that implied (said?) the deal to Winnipeg was finalized, it turned out the deal to stay in Phoenix was just getting started.  I was on an emotional roller coaster last night.

Two things I want to say to the fans of both cities before I mention the latest happenings:

Nooope, nobody's to "blame" for this up north.

This doesn’t have to be so personal.  The people of Winnipeg want a team, and are not to be blamed for that.  And on the other side, Coyote fans are not to be blamed for wanting their team to stay.  There are crappy people and great people on both sides of the border, I promise.  Let’s try to minimize generalizations and keep it classy.

The rampant pot-shotery from people who’re otherwise smart folks is weird, and hopefully uncharacteristic of the majority of hockey fans.

Quick summary of my understandings: Glendale has agreed to bend over and take it up the tailpipe to make hockey work here, and by the end of June, we’ll know with who and by what terms.  I don’t suppose either of these owners care to airlift the arena somewhere closer to me in Chandler, do they?

As I’ve mentioned before, best I can tell, supporters should back the Ice Edge bid – they’ve provided no hint of “we might move”, they’ve realized the importance of the fan base (and realized it exists), and most importantly, the guys I listen to here that have dilligently followed this situation for years support them.  Soooo, that’s good enough for me.  Support Ice Edge!  (On Twitter, if you like: @IceEdgeDJ)

*****

Blackhawks vs. Sharks

Should be a doozy

 My prediction is coming in the next day or two….. San Jose / Chicago… who ya got?

*****

Shorter entry today, as there’s a second one for you to take in.  Hope your week is going smooth.  And hey, it’s May!  Smile for spring.

Comments

17 Responses to “The Canucks Don’t Suck, The Coyotes…. EXIST!”
  1. Liviu says:

    As a Canucks fan, I have to agree that we do have a very talented team. In my opinion, when we’re playing well, we can play with and beat anybody in the league. The L.A. series was difficult, and Chicago has some firepower offensively that our five and a half defensemen (before Edler got injured) just couldn’t contain last night. My only question about the game is why didn’t Vigneault dress a seventh defenseman? He should have seen from the morning skate and the warm-up that Salo wasn’t going to be able to go 100 percent.

  2. St. Cloud Gopher says:

    JB,
    Maybe you know from some “insider” stuff, but I thought there was a clause in the Ice Edge deal that would allow a move in 5 years if certain stipulations (attendance, income, etc.) were not met.
    I could (and probably am) wrong about this, but was just wondering.
    I hope PHO stays if, for nothing else, you get to continue a career that you have found rewarding (if not in a money-way).
    Bournes Blog is gonna need an official sponsor if you have to start flying to games every week!

  3. JD says:

    Watching that game last night, the only thing going through my mind was “The Hawks are winning the Cup”. Maybe that is a disservice to SJ because they aren’t fresh in my mind, but the way the Hawks roll 3 lines is downright scary. Throw in Keith and Seabrook crushing seemingly every important minute of the game and that team is a force.

  4. Char says:

    I have a feeling it’s San Jose’s year at last. Unless Nabakov melts down.

  5. Deirdre says:

    I worry less about Nabby’s meltdown than our “first” line’s…guess we’ll see :-)

  6. Justin says:

    JB-

    Bruins or Flyers tonight?

  7. jtbourne says:

    I think Leighton plays sick, the Bruins go “wait, who’s supposed to score again?”, and the Flyers make everyone in Boston crazy. Rask is money, so I think we’ll see a low scoring Flyers win… 3-1, empty netter? (That was WAY too specific to be right!)

  8. WWPKD says:

    Despite great salesmenship by a few top sellers (Thorton, Heatly, Pavelski, Marleau, ect.) I am still not sold on San Jose making the cup finals. My trust in Nabakov is still medium at best despite how high i want it to be. With Big Buff doin’ wat he do, Pat Kane scoring silky smooth goals (while trying his best to avoid physical contact of any kind) and the top 4 (Keith, Seabrook, Campbell, _insert_name_here_) dropping the steel curtain, I dont think anyone can really stop them in a best of 7. Jon T. just has to keep’m focused and working hard as a unit, something im sure he is more than capable of doing. Is it just me or does it seem like Jonathan Toews is using the NHL as a stepping stone to some higher league that ONLY he is good enough to play in?

    I feel like I should hate pat kane for many reasons. He punches cabbies, plays softer than most Rec Leaguer’s I know, often makes passes that put people it tough spots, and..wel extreme jealousy might have something to do with it. However I have trouble booooing someone who scores awesome goals, has solid cellys, has been rumored to have dated Taylor Swift, AND is American…..I dont know what to think anymore.

  9. caps says:

    I think we can all agree sportswriters don’t go into the business so they can write about legal proceedings and council meetings….but nice, simple breakdown of the situation in hockeyspeak

  10. caps says:

    oh ya and hawks in 5.

  11. Amy Jo says:

    @ St. Cloud Gopher

    The deal you are thinking of that allows for movement of the team in five years is Reinsdorfs.

    Ice Edge are the hockey blokes that want to play 5 regular season home games in Canada for additional revenue.

    God help my team.

  12. SDC says:

    all I have to say about the Canucks is at the following link: http://bit.ly/brI2YV

    It’s the most won-der-ful time of the year.

  13. nightfly says:

    JB – I appreciate your passion, but that’s not the best marketing slogan. “Coyotes Hockey – WE EXIST.” It’s like Major League: “Cleveland still has a ball club?”

    Other rejected Coyotes marketing campaigns:

    “Be our 1,000,000th fan and you can own the team!”
    “Jobing Arena – now featuring a Shoney’s on the lower concourse!”
    “Now our coaches leave the sports betting to you.”
    “Heck, the Cards were in the Super Bowl – why not buy season tickets?”
    “17% more teeth than the leading hockey team.”
    “Get hooked on us now, and in 30 years you can be as crazily irrational as Flyers fans!”
    “We promise we won’t move to Guadalejara.”
    “More Canadians than the Suns.”
    “Uniforms no longer cause seizures in HD.”

  14. neil says:

    It was a tough series, I think ultimately the Canucks lost to a better team (Daniel agrees, Luongo doesn’t). It would have been nice to have Willie in the line-up and AHLberts in the press box, but every team has to deal with injuries, that’s nothing new or unique (Chicago was lucky to be healthy, but Boston, Philly, and Montreal, not so much).

    Yer right Bourne, Canucks fans should relax, but at the same time, it shouldn’t be news to anyone that fans with high expectations fall hard, and the surrounding media panders to the emotional climate. There is no question that far too many Vancouver fans lose their tits when the team loses a tough game/series, but like I said, this isn’t exactly rare in the world of fandom. Calgary media was asking about trading Iginla the day after the Flames got eliminated. Habs fans were booing Price off the ice last year when they got bounced. Hell, the Chicago sports media called out Jonathan Toews because the Hawks went down 2 games to 1 against the Preds! – http://sports.yahoo.com/nhl/blog/puck_daddy/post/Blackhawks-ripped-to-shreds-by-media-fans-after?urn=nhl,235665 I’m sure it happens more in some cities and less in others, but imho that’s just the nature of the beast. Maybe someday people will vote on the issues. :)
    I’m disappointed that the Canucks didn’t play a bit smarter in some of those games and that Luongo hasn’t played his best hockey since about mid-way through the regular season, but I’m happy with where the team is right now and I think the important pieces are firmly in place for the next few years. The young guys (Raymond, Bernier, Grabner, Shirokov, etc.) are getting better, Kesler is still a beast, Hodgson and Schroeder are in the pipeline, Sedins are under contract and playing the best hockey of their careers, Samuelsson and Erhoff are worth every penny, Edler and Bieksa have a ton of potential, I think life is good in Canuck-land and the future is sunny. I’ve been trying in vain to convince some of my more emotional brothers-in-arms that there is no shame in losing to an excellent Hawks team in 6 games, but so far it seems that people aren’t necessarily mad about losing, they’re mad about HOW they lost: getting lit up at home, 5-7 goals per game, and feeling like the Hawks manhandled our D and our goalie. Yeah, it definitely felt like that…. but it’s not like we got manhandled by a team we were clearly better than (like the Kings). Onwards and upwards!

  15. neil says:

    On a totally unrelated note, it appears the comments from a certain sports blogger about the depth of Hockey Canada were right on the money: http://sports.yahoo.com/nhl/blog/puck_daddy/post/Team-USA-s-relegation-nightmare-continues-at-IIH?urn=nhl,240634#remaining-content

  16. wychwood says:

    San Jose are amazing when they’re on, but I think the Hawks can get inside their heads. I keep remembering that 7-2 win, Hossa’s first game with the Hawks, when they scored three shorties and the Sharks looked like they were desperately praying not to be given any more penalties. Of course, the Sharks are rolling so far in these playoffs, but I’m still hopeful…

    But how ’bout them Habs, right?

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