As the sun rose Friday morning in Vancouver, it carried the promise of a new day, a new better day packed with goodness.
It’s Friday after all, the weekend is within reach and it’s tough to see the gloom in that.
Even this eternal optimist was a little murkier on this morning though, and for good reason.
With the Vancouver Canucks dropping their season opener Thursday night in Calgary 5-3 to the Flames, the dream of an undefeated season swirled its way down the drain.
No more 82-0-0 regular season record, no more 164-point season, no more pointed party hats, streamers, crazy straws, silly putty or kazoos come April 10. No matter what, the Canucks will always have a stain of imperfection attached to the 2009-10 season.
In fact, they’ll have a lot more blemishes if they stay on the road they’re headed down; undefeated is out of the picture, but winless isn’t.
Maybe Vancouver will finish 0-82-0 and…and…I’m sorry, my inner cynic is as useless as all the 2016 Chicago Olympics merchandise available in the Windy City.
The Canucks are fine. So what if they’re on pace to make the 1974-75 Washington Capitals, who finished with the worst record in NHL history at 8-67-5, look like hockey gods. It’s early.
As tough as it is for me to say, maybe losing to Calgary in the season opener was a good thing. Vancouver had won five of six season openers dating back to 2002-03, with three of those victories coming against the Flames.
Home many Stanley Cups have the Canucks won since the 2002-03 season? (*Hint – it’s the same number of humanitarian awards Sean Avery has won…)
This loss was a good thing, it shakes things up and staring at a winless season, the Canucks are bound to respond with sheer cat-lady-like craze Saturday in Colorado.
After that, watch your back 1995-96 Detroit Red Wings. Vancouver’s plan to bump you and your NHL best 62-13-7 record down a peg enters phase two.
Going undefeated is overrated anyways, a lot like the snuggie. Just look at the NFL's 1972 Miami Dolphins. They went 17-0 and captured Super Bowl VII over the Washington Redskins, but now they live in fear of being usurped.
They hover together every season praying each team drops the ball and loses at least one game – you should have seen the dance moves the players whipped out after the New York Giants ended the New England Patriots run for perfection in Super Bowl XLII two years ago.
And if you really think about it, 81-1-0 has a better ring to it anyways.
You do a lot more winning saying eighty-WON and WON.
Who is Optimist Prime? He's an eternal Canucks believer whose glass is always half full, even when it's empty.
Throughout the 2009-10 season, Optimist will take a lighthearted look at the Canucks while never losing the faith. It's Cup time baby!