In terms of the atmosphere, I have to say it was pretty weak. I was wearing my game-worn Igor Larionov #18 from the 75th Anniversary year. Nobody really said anything to me on the way in. I noticed a lack of Canucks jerseys though.
On every seat was an orange Ducks towel. I immediately threw mine on the ground. But why orange? That is not a Ducks color, nor has it ever been. I don’t get it.
My seat was first row of the first deck, what they call “Club Seats.” Back at the old Pacific Coliseum they called them blues. Right behind the Ducks goal. You’re supposed to get waiter service, but we
couldn’t get one to talk to us until near the end of the period, and she brought us our order in the third! Pathetic!
There were a couple of huge guys behind me, that started heckling early. The Cowan goal shut them up for a bit, and people laughed when I used the orange towel to wipe my butt. I maybe should have saved that bit, as it was obviously premature.
I don’t know what it was, but the guys stopped skating. And then the heckling started big time. Nothing too creative: “What’s a Canuck? Hey, I’ve got a Canuck stuck to the bottom of my shoe! Hey Igor - you guys ever going to get a shot?” After the goals they would jump down next to me and sing their goal song in my ear. But I mostly just tuned them out.
Sometimes it got loud, but it wasn’t nearly as loud as a Canucks game, and nothing like Chicago Stadium back in the day (I was pelted with food wearing #18 during that game!). And the biggest disappointment? Despite supposedly being a sellout, there were blocks and blocks of empty seats. That’s just brutal. Also, with 2 minutes to go, half the building left! I can see leaving early when you’re losing, but can you imagine people leaving early at GM Place when the Canucks are about to win a playoff game? MADNESS!!! These people don’t deserve to move on. ;)
One guy I noticed did stay was Earl from Battle of California. I spotted his green tee and went down to say hi to him quickly. He had kick ass seats that made me jealous, so I left. ;)
One other note: between the 2nd and 3rd, I was on the phone in the concourse and noticed Matt Cooke walking by. I got off the phone and caught up with him, but he didn’t seem too in the mood to chat. I asked about him, Salo, and Bieska, and he said the latter two should be back soon. I noticed he had quite the limp he was walking with though. :(
All in all, a crap experience, given we lost, didn’t compete, and the fans barely cared. Can’t make Game 2 but hoping for Game 5. But this team has surprised me all year, so there’s still hope.
Guest Submission by Jeff Z.