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GAME DAY: Canucks vs Flyers- A Night For Big Pat

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It's going to be an emotional one at Rogers Arena, as the team pays tribute to the big Irishman who not only won the hearts of Canucks fans, but helped save this team.

Dave Sandford/Getty Images
Time 7:00 PM PST
TV Sportsnet Pacific
H2H Last 5
1-0 Canucks
Last Meeting
4-0 Canucks Jan 15/15
The Enemy Broad Street Hockey coring Leaders H. Sedin: 15-45-60
Voracek: 21-48-69

Canucks
CATEGORY
Flyera
39-25-4 SEASON RECORD 29-27-15
82 Points 73
2nd Division Position 5th
Won 1
Streak Lost 1
2.78 (13)
Goals For Per 60 (GF60)
2.58 (21)
2.68 (19)
Goals Against Per 60 (GA60)
2.72 (21)
17.3 (21) Power Play % 22.7 (3)
86.0 (3) Penalty Kill % 76.9 (29)
47.4 (27) Faceoff Win % 51.4 (12)
10.5 (20) PIM / GP 9.7 (12)
48.9 (22) Corsi For % 50.1 (20)
100.4 (15) PDO 99.6 (21)

After a strong showing against that disaster on ice aka the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Canucks are playing the 1st of 3 games this week and it's a very special one as the Canucks pay tribute to the life and legacy of the late Pat Quinn with another of his former teams, the Philadelphia Flyers in to visit.

The celebration comes on St Patrick's Day, and is also being celebrated as the street in front of Rogers Arena is being renamed Pat Quinn Way. Quinn came to the Canucks first as an original, skating in the opening night lineup in 1970. He played 2 seasons each with the Leafs and Canucks before finishing his playing career in 1977 after 5 years with the Atlanta Flames. Not long after his on ice career ended, he turned to coaching, spending his first year as an assistant with the Flyers, and then being named head coach of their farm team in Maine in 1978, but took over as Flyers head coach later that season. His next season was one that saw him lead the team to the Stanley Cup Finals before falling to the powerhouse New York Islanders in 6 games. Quinn won the Jack Adams trophy that year.

A couple years later he was let go by the Flyers, but in 1984 took the coaching position in Los Angeles. While still under contract with the Kings he signed a deal that would see him leave at the end of the season and become the President and GM of the Canucks. Quinn, who had earned his law degree in between his time between the Flyers and Kings, argued the Kings had missed an option deadline in his contract, but the NHL still suspended him, and barred him from coaching until the end of the 1990-91 season. Quinn's impact on this team as GM was massive. His first trade brought them Kirk McLean and Greg Adams from the New Jersey Devils for Patrik Sundstrom, and then drafted Trevor Linden, while the following year he raised eyebrows picking a speedy Russian kid named Pavel late in the 6th round of the 1989 draft. Under Quinn the Canucks became a respectable team, especially once the coaching ban imposed by the NHL was lifted, and it culminated in that magical run in 1994.

His record speaks for itself: Two Memorial Cups (1 as a player, 1 as owner of the Vancouver Giants), 2 Stanley Cup Finals appearances, and 2 Jack Adams trophies. He led Canada to gold at the 2002 Olympics, and 2004 World Cup of Hockey, as well as gold with the U18's in 2008 and at the World Junior Championships in 2009. He was the Chairman of the HHOF Selection committee, and in addition to the street being renamed for him today, also has an arena in his name in his hometown of Hamilton.

Tonight will see the Canucks get Alex Burrows back in the lineup after missing out on another opportunity to beat up Phil Kessel Saturday night. This is an important game for the Canucks (as they all are at this time of year) but especially because it's against an Eastern opponent (no stress if it goes to extra time about giving away points), and a win will keep them in a home ice position for the first round of the playoffs in April. They're 6-3-1 in their last 10, and slowly getting healthy, with many regulars returning to the lineup. Eddie Lack, who's done a heck of a job carrying the load while Ryan Miller rehabs his knee, will once again get the start tonight.

The Flyers are pretty much out of the playoff picture in the East, 9 points back of Boston for that last wild card spot, and they'll be without Matt Read tonight as he has returned home to be with his wife for the birth of his child.  With Calgary, Minnesota and Winnipeg all in action tonight, the Canucks can ill afford anything less than a win to help them lock down those 2 points and achieve their 40th win of the season. Some tough games coming up for them down the road (2 against LA, another against Chicago, St Louis, Nashville and a huge one April 4 against Winnipeg) so they best make hay while they can.

GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN

Moby Dick is a thrash band from Hungary that formed in 1980, and like most Hungarian metal acts, sing in their native tongue as opposed to English like most other European acts. Pioneers in the Hungarian metal scene, they released 11 albums and are still active, their most recent disk coming out last year. From the 1990 album 'Ugass Kutya!' this is Káosz és Zűrzavar (Chaos and Confusion)

IMPROMPTU DRINKING GAME RULES

- 1 Drink: For the Big Irishman

- 1 Drink: If they show this.

- 2 drinks for a Derek Dorsett Gordie Howe hat trick tonight.

- 2 drinks for any Claude Giroux butt-grabbing reference

- 3 drinks for a Dan Hamhuis goal that's not in his own net

- and finally, 3 drinks if your eyes stay dry on what should be a very special pregame.