11 Best “Wonders at One Shot” in Vancouver Canucks History


The Vancouver Canucks paid tribute to many players and moments during their 50th anniversary season.

But a group fell through the cracks. And the wonders all at once?

Here’s a look at some of the best players in franchise history who have appeared in less than a season with the Canucks, excluding players from the current team.

11. Brian Glynn (1993-1994)

More than half of Brian Glynn’s tenure as the Vancouver Canuck was spent in the playoffs during the team’s run to the 1994 Stanley Cup final. Glynn was a clever pick-up by Pat Quinn , and the 6-foot-4 defenseman was helpful during the playoffs, taking over as Jyrki Lumme’s partner after losing Dana Murzyn to an injury.

10. Mike Santorelli (2013-14)

John Tortorella’s only season behind the Canucks’ bench got off to a great start, thanks in part to the exceptional play of newcomer Mike Santorelli. At the time of his end-of-season injury in January 2014, only the Sedins and Ryan Kesler had more points. The Vancouver native scored 28 points in 49 games that season.

9. Bob Essensa (2000-01)

Bob Essensa became a fan favorite during his only season in Vancouver in 2000-01. Fans have regularly serenaded “Backup Bob” by chanting his name regularly.

Essensa outstripped Felix Potvin, flying starts before Potvin moved and Dan Cloutier was recruited. Essensa had a .892 save percentage in 39 games but had a winning record (18-12-3), helping the Canucks make the playoff return for the first time in five years.

8. Charlie Hodge (1970-71)

The expansion of the Vancouver Canucks made the unusual decision to transport three goalies in 1970-1971, and Charlie Hodge was by far the best. Two-time winner of the Vézina Trophy, Hodge helped the Canucks to their very first victory on October 11, 1970.

Vancouver was the last step in its NHL career, winning 15-13-5, which was far above the combined record of 9-33-3 for the other two Canucks goaltenders.

7. Nick Bonino (2014-15)

One of the pieces acquired in Ryan Kesler’s trade, Nick Bonino scored 39 points in 75 games, centering the Canucks second row. He has helped the Canucks advance to the playoffs this season, adding three points in six postseason games.

6. Thomas Vanek (2017-18)

Veteran sniper Thomas Vanek was a prolific Canucks scorer in 2017-18, scoring 17 goals and 41 points in 61 games before being traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

5. Anatoli Semenov (1992-1993)

Russian center Anatoli Semenov has 44 points in 62 regular games after being acquired by the Canucks in November 1992. He added four points in 12 games in the 1993 playoffs.

4. Arturs Irbe (1997-1998)

Arturs Irbe was one of the few bright lights in the 1997/98 season, supporting the Canucks in 41 games in the first year of the Mark Messier era. Playing behind a terrible defensive team, Irbe finished 13th among starting goalies in the NHL in save percentage (0.907).

3. Mats Sundin (2008-09)

Mats Sundin Hall of Fame center was not in good shape after taking leave of the first half of the season upon arrival in Vancouver. But Sundin managed to score 28 points in 41 regular season games, not to mention a memorable shootout winner against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Sundin’s worth was truly felt in the playoffs, scoring eight points in eight games for the Canucks.

2. Raffi Torres (2010-11)

One of the most feared bodyguards in the NHL, Raffi Torres brought a different dimension to the Canucks in 2010-2011. Torres scored 29 points in 80 regular season games, then added seven points in 23 playoff games – including a last-minute winner in the first game of the Stanley Cup Finals.

1. Anson Carter (2005-06)

Playing the whole season with Henrik and Daniel Sedin, rightfully, Anson Carter scored 33 goals and added 22 assists for the Canucks in 2005-06. His goal total was a career high, but his career quickly died out after that.

Carter pursued a free agent contract during the offseason, but finished with just 11 goals in 2006-07 with Columbus and Carolina in what turned out to be his last NHL season.


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