When you look back on your time as a fan of the Vancouver Canucks what is the first thing that comes to mind? No, not crushing defeat, or Pavel Bure being traded, or Todd Bertuzzi sneaking Steve Moore from behind. Alright, that’s enough guessing. Maybe this isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you think back through your time as a fan of this team, but it has to rest somewhere. Every now and again I catch myself thinking about Willie Mitchell destroying Jonathan Toews at center ice, Trevor Linden putting Jeff Norton through the glass in the old coliseum, or Keith Ballard, before he was emotionally crippled by the coaching staff.
Anyways, the point of this is to take a look back at some of the biggest hits, the ones I hold near and dear to my black little heart. It’s like a Sportscenter top 10, but with like 13, more swearing and less of Nabil Karim.
It’s the longest clip I could find without shitty music in the background, but here to start things off is Jeff Norton getting crushed through the boards. I actually watched this live as a kid; I asked my Dad why Linden was helping the man instead of hurting him more. Heh.
Who could forget about this gem from the vault of punishing Canucks hits? I wonder what this hit would cost someone in lost games nowadays. Probably somewhere in the double digits, I would imagine. Either way, watch as Teemu Selanne does a fucking flip as Mike Peca hits him.
Next up is the hardest person to be mad at for not being a Canuck anymore. Willie Mitchell absolutely destroys Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews. Weird thing is it’s at the same spot as Peca’s hit on Selanne, but at the time Towes had the puck and had his head down. Huh…weird. Oh, in case you live under a rock I should mention that Willie didn’t sit for this hit.
A little more on the controversial side of things is Markus Naslund. No, not really. The most controversial thing Naslund ever did was change up his pre-game meal before game 7 against the Wild in 2003. I’m actually referring to Raffi Torres. You know ol’ bug eyes, the Red Mexican or that fucking idiot who sticks his tongue out when he scores a goal. In game 3 of the first round of the playoffs Torres, who had just come off of a 4 game suspension for hitting Oilers forward Jordan Eberle pasted Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook behind the Chicago net. While the hit fell into the area that deemed it clean, Torres was given two minutes for interference.
Possibly one of my favorite hits is Todd Bertuzzi on Barrett Jackman in 2003. Jackman, like Seabrook is skating behind the net when Bertuzzi swoops in and crushes Jackman.
Meh, one more Todd Bertuzzi for good measure, it also looks like a hit straight out of an EA Sports game…and you know, I hate Dion Phaneuf.
This is probably the most recognition I’ve ever given Keith Ballard, but he gets a double shot. First the big hit against Jordan Tootoo in the second round of the 2011 playoffs, followed by Jamie McGinn doing a fucking cartwheel in the next series against the San Jose Sharks.
Sticking with hip checks AND double shots, have you ever wondered what it would be like if Dan Hamhuis hip checked a 250 pound bag of shit? Of course you have! I guess it kind of came back to bite Hamhuis in the ass when he made the same hit on Boston Bruins forward Milan Lucic during game 1 of the 2011 Stanley Cup Finals. By the way, this is what it looks like when your stomach explodes.
I’m going to finish things off with Alex Edler, the most frustrating of the Canucks mobile and big blueliners. The hits I’m about to lay out for you are some of his best work (no, not Mike Smith’s Oscar worthy performance dive in 2013’s "The Swede and Me"). If you weren’t frustrated by his flashes of brilliance before and forget these hits existed, well, you’re not alone.
That’s all for me folks. Watch these hits and think of the ones I missed, get mad, smile, have a coke and shut the fuck up!
Thanks for reading!
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