OK Ryan, you got your money, and you’re all set to play hockey in a crazy market like Vancouver. Before the puck drops, however, I would like to offer up some advice on how to survive your three years in our beautiful city.
Tip #1: Be funny on twitter
I can’t stress this one enough. Just start making jokes on twitter. It could be about anything, just as long as you’re cracking wise and making people laugh. Had a bad game? Make fun of yourself. Had a bad week? Talk about The Bachelor. Had a bad month? Bust out a poop joke.
See how easy it is? Now I know this might be hard to believe, but Roberto Luongo was once known as a prickly sort of fellow, until people discovered his twitter account. Then when they saw Luongo making jokes, all was forgiven, and Luongo enjoyed a revival as a hero of the people of Vancouver. The moral of the story? Yell at the media all you want, cut interviews short all you want, but always end on a twitter joke. Never forget to ABJ. Always Be Joking.
Tip #2: Keep that Lucic hate burning bright
Vancouver fans generally don’t enjoy Milan Lucic (unless you’re in his crew, then they will come after you and call you mean names. They once told me they never forget a name or a face after I did an article on Lucic’s downtown screaming session), so nothing will warm you up to the locals more than if you just randomly express how much you hate Milan. It doesn’t even have to be in context, just randomly say it in a post game interview for no reason.
“Yeah, the third period was great, but man, isn’t Milan Lucic such a piece of s**t?”
“We just have to go out there, stick to our game plan, and always remember, Lucic is a piece of s**t.”
You will find people nodding their heads in agreement and putting their hands up for a high five without even realizing what they are doing.
Tip #3: Become best friends with Eddie Lack
Vancouver fans watched as fan favorites in Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider had their souls systematically crushed by the previous management. In Schneider’s case, it was the equivalent to working your ass off to one day become manager, only to be fired when you finally got your promotion, and sent to a new company to start over again. In Luongo’s case, it was like taking a baseball bat and hitting him in the face, screaming “Why don’t you appreciate me anymore??” before giving him a sweet retirement package.
All of this led to Eddie Lack being the lone survivor of the three headed goalie monster (props to Andrew Raycroft for partaking in this dance at the start), and because Eddie follows rule number one, “Be funny on twitter”, many fans have grabbed a hold of him and have a huge devotion to him.
So it would behoove you to treat Eddie nice and at least pretend to be buddies with him. Make jokes, pose for pictures, and generally try and avoid anything that might start the dreaded “goalie controversy” narrative from starting (it will start regardless, it’s just best to try and hold it off as long as you can.)
Tip #4: Keep an eye out on Eddie Lack
While this might be weird after seeing tip number three, it is kind of convenient that Eddie Lack was the lone survivor…. Watch your back, otherwise you might find yourself being “retired” to Florida. Roberto knows.
Tip #5: Make a friend at Canucks Army (who isn’t me)
Not gonna lie to you Ryan, the guys at Canucks Army weren’t happy with the draft. They weren’t happy with the moves made on day one of free agency. They weren’t too stoked a lot of money was spent on you. You’ll want to make friends with one of the stats guys and make him biased towards you, otherwise you will see mountains upon mountains of stats over the next few years proving without a shadow of a doubt, not only are you an average goalie, but also quite possibly the devil, too.
Seriously, sometimes they are able to convince me my name is Jeff Bridges and that I do battery commercials for a living, that’s how good they are at wielding stats like a weapon. You need to get one of them on your side before it’s too late!
Tip #6: Winning a Cup gives you a license to kill
Seriously, I haven’t seen a Cup won in Vancouver, but Trevor Linden ALMOST won a Cup, and the man is a God in Vancouver who can basically do whatever he wants. Should you be the guy who propels the Canucks to win a Cup somehow during this rebuild phase, I don’t know what will happen, but I’m assuming you will be given a green light to kill anyone who displeases you, as well as free grapes whenever you want. Use that as motivation.