Bruce Boudreau says the Canucks championship belt may be replaced by something else next season
Photo credit:Twitter via @Canucks
10 months ago
The Vancouver Canucks’ championship belt was very popular among fans and players alike in its first season circulating the Canucks’ locker room.
Introduced by head coach Bruce Boudreau, the championship belt serves as a player of the game award of sorts, given out by teammates, to teammates, to recognize exceptional performances.
It’s not always given to the player who just had the best game, either, as that would have just quickly turned it into the Thatcher Demko Award.
Instead, the belt is used to bring teammates together, and to recognize performances that otherwise may have gone unnoticed — like when a player blocks a key shot late in a game, for instance.
“One of the things I’ve thought for a long time here is that we didn’t have anything to bring us together after a big win,” Boudreau told the locker room when he introduced the belt in mid February. “Where you’ve got a player of the game, somebody gets a hat or some [expletive] thing. I hope you don’t mind, I got something that I’d like to start. Whoever gets it has got to say a little something and then he hangs it in his stall or whatever until we win the next game, and then he gives it to the next guy.”
Yesterday at his final media availability of the season, Boudreau gave the goods on what the plan is for the belt.
“It’ll probably stay here,” Boudreau told CanucksArmy. “This is something that — it’s a year-to-year thing. I presented it this year, but I mean, next year if they have a different idea, like whether it’s a hat, whether it’s something else, that’s up to them. It’s usually something from within the team that they feel comfortable with.
“My son had the belt [at one of his games] and I went in one game of his and seen how the reaction was and I said ‘if I coach, I’m gonna get this belt and see how it works.’
“And it worked, but they may choose something different next year. We had three different things in Minnesota when we were doing it, from a belt, to a hat to — I think a big bone was one of them — it’s a player’s thing, but I wanted to implement it this year because we hadn’t had one before.”
Of course, Boudreau and the Canucks need to agree on an extension first before he’s back as head coach, but even if this does turn out to be Boudreau’s first and only season with the Canucks — and all signs suggest that’s not going to be the case — then Boudreau’s mark will still be left on this organization for years to come.
Many fans are hoping Boudreau returns as head coach next season, and even more are hoping that they see the belt — or whatever object the players choose — more regularly, because it means the Canucks are winning games.
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