If You Love Him Set Him Free: Roberto Luongo

Loouuuungo

Roberto Luongo has been traded. This trade news was only shocking in that I think people had given up on it ever actually happening. Personally, I found myself feeling nothing but relief and happiness for Luongo when the news broke. I will miss him terribly, because he is both a wonderful goalie and a wonderful person, but Luongo leaving was the best thing for him. It’s like if you read about someone leaving horrific circumstances to get a fresh start in a new country, when you hear about an animal abused and abandoned who ends up in happy home, or like someone escaping prison to live out their days on a tropical island.

I have a lot of Luongo memories I will never forget. This picture after his first playoff win with the Canucks is stuck in my memory for all time.

stickraise

My first year as a Canucks diehard, the only way I had access to their games was on the radio, since I was living in a dorm room in Saskatchewan. Tommy Larscheid’s quirky, exuberant radio calls every time Luongo made a spectacular save never failed to make me laugh.

We’re left wondering what would have happened if the Canucks had just a tiny bit more talent and a little more luck while we had the pleasure of Luongo in net.

The trade return the Canucks received for him isn’t all that bad actually. Markstrom and Matthias have struggled certainly, but they are both still young, and there’s no reason why they can’t play a lot better with a fresh start in Vancouver. And I do find it delightful the Canucks now have THREE Swedish goalies. Joe Cannata is going to feel like a bit of an outsider. Heh.

Having said all that though, all of the lead up to this trade is completely terrible and completely on the Canucks. They went from having both Luongo and Schneider, to having neither in less than a year. From two of the better goalies in the league, to a tandem that has not even a full season of NHL experience between them. With all due respect to Lack and Markstrom, who are lovely, that is not great. At all.

On top of that, how are you going to attract premiere free agents or expect great players to waive their no trade clauses to come to Vancouver after seeing how Luongo was treated?

Gillis has done some really good work with the Canucks. But after this goalie fiasco, I don’t see how you can argue he should keep his job.

But anyways, run free Luongo! Enjoy your second term in Florida with your family and friends nearby. You deserve it.

A Hockey Poem

Canada won

The hockey game

Everyone (in Canada) was very happy

Even the moose

Even the beavers

Rob Ford did a weird dance

Stephen Harper did one robotic fist pump

Would Stephen Harper write a new hockey book?

No one knows

Now it would be maple syrup versus meatballs

Maple leaves versus IKEA

For the prettiest medal at the dance

Would ABBA ring out from iPods in victory?

Or would it be Nickleback warbling away?

We wait for 4 am Sunday(7 am eastern) in anticipation

Do we stay up all night?

Or do we sleep and rise before the birds?

No one knows what the result will be

Except for the hockey gods and lady luck

And maybe those tricksy stats guys

We stand on guard for thee hockey

We stand on guard for thee

Wherein My Team Makes Me All Gushy About Sports

I spend a lot of time thinking about sports, and more specifically, why watching sports matters. Seriously, a lot of time. I’m sure I’m weird, but it keeps me up at night sometimes. A lot of nasty things happen that tend to be centered around sports. It’s easy to start wondering why you bother supporting something so strongly that can have such a dark edge.

Then, if you fall in love with a team like the Canucks who always manage to lose it all in the most hulk smash of your heart way possible, you really start to wonder why you bother watching sports. But, sports do matter.

They matter for me because they connect me to people. They make me feel a part of something. Sometimes life isn’t going how you imagined it is supposed to. Sometimes all that’s getting you through a day is knowing you can turn on your TV at night and watch some Swedish twins score a beautiful goal. Other times, you are shuffling along in a fabulous mood, and hockey is just an excuse to energetically cheer and clap and put a voice to your fabulous mood.

The Canucks have shown me twice this week that sports matter. This article from the team website about a transgender goalie named Cory and his meeting with Cory Schneider is amazing. The Canucks have been one of the pioneers for LGBT support in sports and it continues to be one of my favourite things about them.

How wonderful that in a society that is so often ignorant or insulting to transgender individuals, Cory Schneider and the Canucks are saying you’re important and we support you.

The Canucks also announced an initiative with the other Canadian teams in the NHL called Hockey Talks to encourage people to speak out about mental illness.

Here’s an article from The Province about Rick Rypien’s story and more details about Hockey Talks. This issue is especially meaningful to me, and I couldn’t be happier the Canucks are spearheading it.

It’s really incredible to hear your team vocally support such important and valuable issues. Sports do matter.

Canucks Fan Playoff Preparedness Kit

Are we excited? I’m excited! With the playoffs starting tonight I’ve prepared a helpful playoff kit for you Canucks fans to use throughout this joyous spring season.

For the tonne of trash talk and whining about the Canucks that is going to come your way, take a deep breath, and refer to these as often as necessary:

In case you get into a riot-y part of town: flame retardant clothing!

 

For the cause and solution to all playoff problems…alcohol!

Enjoy the ride! Don’t forget to get lots of sleep and non alcoholic fluids. It’s a marathon not a sprint. Don’t feed the trolls and cheer your heart out. Viva la Euros!

XO Humming Giraffe

Canucks Launch Mind Check

Today, the Canucks announced the launch of their mental health initiative through the Canucks For Kids Fund in partnership with the BC Children’s Hospital, Fraser Health, and Provincial Health Services. Mind Check is a website designed to get people talking about mental illness as well as helping young people and their families that are dealing with mental health issues. The Canucks published a press release with more details about the website.

Kevin Bieksa gives a heartfelt pledge that is important to hear. You can buy the t-shirt he’s wearing through the Canucks stores with proceeds going to the Canucks For Kids Fund.

Mind Check also honours Rick Rypien’s memory. He fought so hard through his own depression and wanted to help others by telling his story. Sadly, he never got the chance but this is a wonderful legacy that will help others and the Canucks will be able to tell Rick’s story through the website. As one of the biggest fans of Rick Rypien around and as someone with loved ones that battle metal illness this is something near and dear to my heart. Often you’re told that being a Canucks fan must be hard. No Cups to cheer about and horrific playoff disappointment. But you know what? I couldn’t be prouder being a Canucks fan because of the incredible work they do day in and day out in the community. Haters to the left!

And My Heart Grew Three Sizes Today

Danny Sedin when asked in Las Vegas about his NHL award nominations from the Vancouver Sun:

“In fact, Sedin said Tuesday that as proud as he would be to follow in the footsteps of twin brother Henrik and win the Hart Trophy at Wednesday’s NHL Awards, he would be more honoured if he and Henrik happen to win the NHL Foundation Player Award.”

“Obviously, the Foundation Award is bigger for us,” Daniel said. “The Hart Trophy (nomination) is an incredible honour and it’s fun to be here for that. But for us, we have always been taught that once you get to Vancouver there’s a lot of community work. That’s something you get used to when you play in Vancouver. That’s a big part of being a hockey player there. It’s very nice.”

So, this. This is so amazing.

If only the rioters had thought for a moment “I should be more like the Sedins” a lot of awful things might not have happened. I will defend Hank and Danny Sedin until the day I die. I’ll use my bare hands if I have to.