The stage was all set for the debut of our savior Brock Boeser. He had just finished playing a double OT game the night before in his last game with North Dakota. He was playing in his home state, with the whole family in the building, and against a slumping Wild team. Brock did not disappoint.
GRAB THAT PUCK!
— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) 25 March 2017
A goal worthy of praise from Don Cherry, after he went to the net with his stick on the ice. Although, couldn’t get a mention on Coach’s Corner, sure it has nothing to do with being a Canuck or playing college hockey though. I think the only person happier than Brock’s family was Ben Hutton, although Ben is always happy, about everything.
While I was not happy the Canucks are burning a year of their best prospects Entry-Level Contract, so he can play in meaningless games, with a lot of AHL-caliber talent (insert Megna joke here), it was nice to see him start with the Sedins, and get some time with Horvat and Baertschi.
The spot where this makes sense is the off-the-ice side of things. Brock has been through a lot. From the loss of family and friends, to the struggles of a parent suffering from a terrible disease. As someone who has seen what Parkinson’s does to a loved one, I understand his want to play in the NHL as soon as possible, which makes this even cooler.
“And starting on right wing, I can’t believe it, Brock Boeser!”
— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) March 26, 2017
Also, let’s not ignore the fact his dad’s name is Duke. That is so badass.
It also doesn’t hurt that through all of that Brock is a good guy. Like a really good guy. Like makes me feel like an even bigger POS than I already do. I’m not suggesting he’s a saint with no faults, but it doesn’t hurt he’s good on and off the ice.
The big part here is this wasn’t forced. There was some talk of bringing him in last season, which would have been forcing it. But Brock is ready. Not just because he scored a goal either. He’s mature and poised enough to handle it, and he’s got some learning to do.
Whether it’s from Bo, Baertschi, or any of the younger guys, or just starting that game with the Sedins, all of it will help. My only fear is he will be handled like the other young guys on the team, thrown in and out of top lines because they “haven’t earned it,” or not playing on the PP because we haven’t seen if Megna can cut it yet.
I don’t think he will, because Benning knows this kid is the real deal, and he has to be treated as such. This season was lost months ago, so while burning one year of an ELC for eight games of meaningless hockey isn’t great, but if you’re going to do it, this is the kid to do it with.