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Top 30 Moments: 1-10

by Derek Jory / Vancouver Canucks

The 2008-09 season was one of the most entertaining in recent memory with the Vancouver Canucks experiencing more highs and lows in one year than most teams do in a decade.


There were streaks and slumps, goals and gaffs and an intense playoff run that ended too early. Memories are all that remain from the season that was and the tight knit Canucks, who fought through a mountain of adversity, sure provided some beauties.

Here’s a look at numbers 1-10 of the top 30 Canucks moments from the past season.

10) Mattias the Great

March 15, 2009 vs. Colorado

A mainstay on Vancouver's blueline since the Canucks took him thirteenth overall in the 1994 NHL Entry Draft, Mattias Ohlund did the unthinkable this season in setting the franchise's all-time record for points by a defenceman. Ohlund picked up an assist against Colorado for his 322nd point as a Canuck. His future in Vancouver is still hazy, but that shouldn't take away anything from his time spent here. There's an argument to be made that his No. 2 belongs alongside Smyl and Linden in the rafters.

The Big O with a Big A

9) Mayhem in Chicago

March 29, 2009 @ Chicago

This game was a huge test for the Canucks, one they passed with flying colours. Not only did Vancouver show Chicago who was boss on the scoresheet (4-0), they also taught the lifeless Blackhawks a thing or two about throwing down. It all started when Adam Burish gave Roberto Luongo a shot to the mask and it ended with everyone pairing off trying to rip each other's heads off. Kevin Bieksa vs. Ben Eager was the highlight fight.

Throwing punches


8) Captain Luongo

September 30, 2008 in Vancouver

There was genuine widespread shock around Vancouver and the rest of the hockey world when Roberto Luongo was named the 12th captain of the Canucks. It was a bold, unorthodox move that displayed Mike Gillis' willingness to set his team apart from the rest. It certainly worked, but how was Luongo as captain? That's still up for debate and will continue to be for many moons to come.

The right choice



7) #16 to the rafters

December 17 @ GM Place

It was a career to immortalize and as such Trevor Linden's #16 will forever rest beside Stan Smyl's #12 high above the ice at The Garage. This was an emotional night for Linden and his family and an exciting night for fans, who got to thank Linden for all he's done for this city and province as a member of the Canucks. He gave everything he had each and every game and the banner high in the sky will serve as a reminder of that.

Linden retirement ceremony


6) Northwest Division Champions

April 11, 2009 @ Colorado

Predicted to finish as low as 13th in the Western Conference prior to the start of the season, the Vancouver Canucks showed everyone who was boss by winning their second Northwest Division crown in three years, and third in five. It took a big league run by the Canucks in the second half to get it done after a sub-par start to 2009, but they got the job done. This moment was that much better because it came at the expense of the Calgary Flames, who flickered down the stretch.

The best is yet to come


5) The return of the king

February 23, 2009 @ Toronto

Mats Sundin's return to the Centre of the Universe couldn't have been scripted any better. With the game tied at 2-2, Vancouver and Toronto headed to a shootout. Pavol Demitra and Mikhail Grabovski scored to set the stage for Sundin to score for the win. The former Leafs captain went in on goal with a lot of speed and as his momentum carried him in on Vesa Toskala, he faked a shot and went upstairs with a brilliant backhand. Canucks win. What a goal, what a moment for Sundin.

A dagger to the heart of the Maple Leafs


4) The Streak - Part Two

November 4 - 12, 2009 vs. Nashville, Phoenix, Minnesota & Colorado

When Roberto Luongo is in the zone, it's truly something to behold. Captain Lui outdid himself once again this season by stringing together three consecutive shutouts and wound up with a record-breaking 242 minutes 36 seconds of scoreless hockey before the Avalanche got a puck past him. Luongo estabished a new career-high and franchise record with nine shutouts this season; add in Curtis Sanford's single and the Canucks had 10 donuts overall.

Best of the streak


3) Burrows pays tribute to Bourdon

April 21, 2009 @ St. Louis

Not only did Alex Burrows vault the Vancouver Canucks to the second round of the playoffs with an overtime goal against the St. Louis Blues, but he paid tribute to his best friend Luc Bourdon with his celebration. After scoring on Chris Mason, Burrows circled the net, flew out in front and pulled an arrow out from his back before firing it at the crowd. The imaginary move was Bourdon's favourite, he often played archer after scoring in the QMJHL. It was a fitting celebration for a season dedicated to Bourdon.

Burrows for the sweep

2) Luc Bourdon night

October 9, 2008 vs. Calgary

The first game of the 2008-09 season was Luc Bourdon Night at GM Place and the atmosphere was electric as fans, coaches and players remembered a fallen friend. It was an emotional ceremony that began with a video that showcased the life of the 21-year-old Canucks prospect. The touching video was set to Tom Cochrane's song Big League and Cochrane himself was in the house to perform it. Vancouver then proceeded to thump the Calgary Flames 6-0 with Alex Burrows picking up two goals.

In memory of LB

1) The slump breaker

February 3, 2009 vs. Carolina

This was more than a goal, it was a score that bumped an eight-game winless streak and started a surge of 12 wins in 14 games. On the play in question, the score was tied at 3-3 with less than two minutes to play and the Canucks were shorthanded. It was looking like a sure loss was on the horizon before Alex Burrows got the puck from Ryan Kesler at centre ice. He ripped down the left wing in a fit of rage, forcing Cam Ward into his butterfly before he roofed the puck top shelf on the backhand – his signature move. What a beauty from Burrows.

The prettiest goal of 2008-09


Top 30 Moments: 11-20
Top 30 Moments: 21-30
"Team of destiny"
The last address
Over and out
Why so serious?



45-27-10
Vancouver's 2008-09 season record
 
246 - Total goals for

220 - Total goals against

100 - Points placed Vancouver third in the Western Conference as Northwest Division Champs











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