Canucks start round one on Trevor Linden's birthday. It's a clear day in the city that originated Towel Power, and the skies over the North Shore Mountains are a retina-burning blue. The car flags are starting to bloom, and jersey-wearing fans are popping up like daffodils and tulips.
There's an aura of great hope in town, after last year's dark and horrible failure to make the playoffs. There's a new religion, and the Luongites are a passionate and fervent lot. Cloutier is long forgotten and there are hushed references to '82 and '94.
I, however, am a realistic fan, and am still smarting from the betrayal by the Westcoast Depress last year. My car flag, tattered, is still in a box in the trunk, and will remain there until it has a reason to be unfurled. To me, this will be a win in the first round.
I wish the Canucks luck, as they start into this most grueling of all sporting contests, and send a message to all Canucks fans to celebrate and/or commiserate without breaking things, as they are wont to do.
April 11, 2007