No matter how little of time I have been an avid Canucks fan, there is no way to easily say how incredible of a person Linden is. Even though the career is over, it’s not about being sad. He never won a Stanley Cup, never blew away the masses with his talent on the ice, nor did he really set any notable records that will live forever in the history of the NHL.
When it comes down to it, he’s just another guy.
That’s easier said than what he actually means to the city of Vancouver and to the legions of Canucks fans around the world. He is who he is, and if you don’t know him already, then you don’t know an amazing person.
The day job took me very close to the events as they unfolded today. Running around to help out at the press conference to having him pop in at the home base for interview with the media #131, there is something that strikes you about the guy. Deep down, he’s still the same 18 year old kid that was drafted into the NHL twenty years ago, to this exact day.
And every time I was in the same room as him, he was nothing but smiles.
It gives you some comfort to know that people like him are out there in the big dollar business of professional sports. Even though he could walk into nearly any place in Vancouver and be treated like a king, he’d still give you the time of day and directions to the nearest Tim Horton’s. Hell, today it felt like he’d even give you a lift there in his car, he’s just that awesome.