THE GOOD OLD HOCKEY GAME

The Vancouver Canucks played themselves out of a playoff spot tonight. Losing 2-1 to the Edmonton Oilers, the loss eliminated them from the post season. It wasn’t one of those amazing sprints down the wire where a team just falls one win short. In their last seven games, they managed just one win, a measly two points, just when every other single team in their division was clawing for points. If they had just gone .500, they would have been in a much better position tonight. Hell, even if they had lost the last seven games in shootouts, that would have been ok.

Nevertheless, I am going to the final home game of the season on Saturday evening where the Canucks will face the Calgary Flames. The prices appeared to have dropped quite a bit since the last time I checked. I got lower bowl seats, 4th row even, for $129 each, just $20 over face value. Considering nosebleed seats were going for over $200 just a few days ago, that’s a steal.

I am going of course, solely for the reason that this very well maybe Trevor Linden’s final home and NHL game. As of this writing, he’s hasn’t said anything about retiring yet but if he retires during the summer, I don’t have a time machine to go back to his last game.

If this indeed is his last game, I’ll be pleased that I was able to see it in person. I was there when he played his first home game after being traded back to the Canucks in 2001. The tickets cost me $35 back then and that was using a broker. The Canucks played the Blackhawks that night in November. I got there early to watch the warmup. I’d never heard that much applause for a player just because he took the ice to warmup. There were “welcome back Linden” signs everywhere. Linden was the second star of the game that night.

So after taking a six year break from attending Canucks games, I’ll be going back on Saturday. Retirement or not, I hope the game will be memorable and fun to watch.

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