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Michael Bublé: I wish I were a hockey player!

by JeffK | / Dallas Stars

What is it about those corn-fed Canadian boys that makes em so humble? We've seen it time and again in the NHL. The most down-to-earth professional athletes are hockey players.. usually Canadians. Must be that blue-collar upbringing. They learn the value of hard work at an early age.

Same goes for Canadian crooner Michael Bublé.
Michael Bublé is the son of a salmon fisherman, growing up in Burnaby, British Columbia. Bublé wanted to be a singer from an early age but like most Canadian kids he also had a strong interest in hockey and wanted to become a professional hockey player for the Vancouver Canucks. "I wanted so bad to be a hockey player. . .If I was any good at hockey, I probably wouldn't be singing right now." Bublé said that he "went to every single Canucks home game as a kid. . . I wanted to be Gary Lupul, I wanted to be Patrik Sundstrom and Ivan Hlinka. I used to think that being named Michael Bublé was pretty cool because I was close to being called Jiri Bubla."
Since those early days in BC Michael Bublé has become an international phenomenon, selling more than 25 million albums worldwide and winning Grammys, Junos, and World Music Awards. His latest album Crazy Love released in 2009 debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart and features the hit "Haven't Met You Yet" which he performed as the musical guest on Saturday Night Live in January of this year... even doing a comedy sketch with Jonn Hamm for the outrageously funny "Hamm & Bublé Restaurant" (Watch Here)
And though he's achieved incredible heights in his career he says his "most prestigious" accomplishment came in 2008 when he became a minority owner in the Western Hockey League's Vancouver Giants. Bublé joined fellow co-owners Sultan Thiara, former Toronto Maple Leafs and Vancouver Canucks coach Pat Quinn and NHL legend Gordie Howe in the Giants' ownership lineup.
Michael's sold out Crazy Love Tour stopped in Dallas this past Sunday night at American Airlines Center. Part of his rider (requirements) includes a request for hockey pucks from the arenas he visits.
Well here in Dallas we went one better.

On behalf of Reprise Records we were invited to a private soundcheck performance where afterwards I presented Michael with his very own personalized Dallas Stars home jersey. When asked about the significance of #88 Michael said "My dad wore number 16, and as a kid I wore 8... so double 8's is in honor of my father."
Michael seemed genuinely excited to talk a little stick and puck in mid-July, and he knew his Stars' history.. mentioning players like Shane Churla and Brett Hull, as well as Mike Modano. He also wasted little time before reminding me of the thrilling Stars/Canucks 2007 Playoff battle. He also recounted the story of how Brian Burke once offered him a one-day contract to play for the Toronto Maple Leafs and he turned Burke down because of his fierce loyalty to his Canucks.
As we parted ways Michael mentioned if his schedule allows next time in Dallas he'd love to take in a Stars game. He also reminded me that even though it's been a while since the Stars have been to the top of the mountain his Canucks are still looking for their first NHL Stanley Cup Championship.
Yeah good point. A reality check courtesy of the guy with the "World On A String." Later that night seeing him do his thing musically, with wit and humility, he was able to shrink American Airlines Center and connect with fans on a personal level.
As my wife said after the show.... "Humble, Hot AND Hockey Fan..... "
that's Michael Bublé

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