Pictured above is former Canucks goaltender and current Sportsnet broadcaster John Garrett. This photo might have been taken during the 1984-85 season. That year Garrett earned the nickname “Lotto” because he finished the season with a goals against average of 6.49. To further refresh your memory, that season marked the last year the Canucks wore their flying V jerseys (possibly the ugliest jerseys of all-time), they started the year with Bill Laforge as their head coach and finished the year with a 25-46-9 record. It sucked to be a Canucks fan. Patrick Sundstrom was their leading scorer with a mighty 68 points (only 140 points behind the league leader, Wayne Gretzky). As bad as they were, they finished with the fourth worst record in the league and selected Jim Sandlak fourth overall in the draft that summer (yikes), so not exactly a great reward for finishing poorly.
Two days before Markus Naslund is set to become the third player in Canucks history to have his number raised to the rafters, I can’t help but feel like anyone excited about this is forced to defend him. No question, his detractors are out there and there are a lot of people not in favour of his number being retired. Why? A lot of people didn’t like his demeanor, blame him for lack of playoff success or his perceived lack of leadership. But the real reason? A lot of fans have short memories.
It’s the moment you’ve all been waiting for…the top ten of our top 40 Canucks of all-time countdown! I think most Canucks fans would have these players in their top ten, but the order in which they appear is sure to stir up debate. Henrik won the Hart, Naslund won the Pearson, Linden has the most points and Bure was the most electrifying. Among goalies, McLean won the big game but Luongo has the best numbers. Who is the best? Only Canuckz.com knows for sure:
The Canucks held their annual Summer Summit (formerly known as the state of the franchise) last night at Rogers Arena (yes, it will take a while to get used to the new name) where they announced that Markus Naslund will have his #19 jersey retired on December 11th. And so the debate begins: is he deserving of this honour? This was a debate Canuckz.com brought up at about this time last year, to which I thought he was deserving, but I thought the team ought to wait a few years before retiring it.