In 1999, Henrik Sedin was chosen third overall, after his brother Daniel and Patrick Stefan in the NHL Entry Draft. The top five picks of that draft class, rounded out with Pavel Brendl and Tim Connolly. Out of those top chosen five players of that draft class, only Henrik and Daniel have played more than 1100 NHL games, Hank with 1212 and Danny 1189. The Sedins are also the only two of that draft class that are within 40 points of 1000 NHL points. Out of those top five players picked in the Sedin’s draft year, Henrik and Daniel are the only ones who became NHL All Stars. I guess Brian Burke knew what he was doing in drafting the twins. Sixteen, almost seventeen, seasons later, Henrik Sedin is going to accomplish something no Canucks player has ever done, he is going to hit 1000 NHL points in his illustrious career.
It’s kind of a big deal for the Canucks, their fans, and the beloved Captain. No one has ever done it before. Trevor Linden hasn’t done it, nor Markus Naslund, not even the Canucks only Hall of Famer, Pavel Bure has scored 1000 points. Hank will be the first, and not only am I excited for the city, the team and all his loved ones, it couldn’t happen to a better person.
Sure, there have been plenty of players who have hit the 1000 point milestone and have done it in less time, but I’m not here to compare Henrik to current and past greats of the game. I am here to celebrate something special for the Vancouver Canucks, their fans, and their franchise points leader. Henrik is making his way into uncharted waters for the first time in this organization’s history. Whatever that says about the organization, it has no bearing on what Henrik has contributed to this franchise.
What’s even more impressive, Henrik Sedin has only missed 30 games in his 16 year NHL career, including playing in all 46 of this current season’s games. His durability has been incredible, and at 36, although he’s not the Art Ross and Hart Trophy winning player any longer, Henrik is still contributing as one of the team’s point leaders.
Tonight, Henrik has a chance to hit 1000 NHL points, at home in Rogers Arena. The Florida Panthers are in town, and the goalie the Canucks face, is Roberto Luongo. His former teammate from that 2011 Stanley Cup Finals team, could be the tender on record to give Henrik his career milestone. How fitting. However, if Henrik does reach that new apex in his NHL career, there isn’t a guy between the pipes to try harder to stop him, but if he can’t, Luongo would be the happiest goaltender to ever give up that point to Hank.
Just how big of a moment is this for the Canucks and their fans? Pavel Bure has 779 points in 709 NHL games; Trevor Linden has 867 points in 1382 games; Markus Naslund has 869 points in 1117 games. What is the biggest difference between Henrik and those former Canuck legends? Henrik, will be playing game 1213 and going for point 1000, and he has never played for another NHL franchise in achieving that goal. I cannot imagine a better scenario and more fitting person to be the first Vancouver player to ever hit that milestone.
I’ve been a Canucks fan for 35 years, I’m 42 years old and I’ve loved this team since I was a young girl of seven. I have yet to see a Stanley Cup victory, although I have watched all three Cup Final appearances. I have only seen one Canucks player be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. I have seen a player become so beloved in this city, he became one of its most dedicated citizens and then took over the helm of running the franchise as President. I’ve seen three goalies put teams on their backs to bring them to the Stanley Cup finals, each with having their own place in Canucks history. I’ve seen a line that had their way with the NHL for a few seasons and had the best nickname for a line this city has ever heard, “The West Coast Express”. As great as those players, moments and honours have been for the Vancouver Canucks, Henrik Sedin has already surpassed them in his tenure here, and sometimes, he doesn’t get the credit he deserves. We are truly honoured, Canucks fans.
I for one, am so overwhelmed with emotion for the fans, the franchise but especially for Henrik. As a captain and teammate, he is always about the team first, his career accomplishments find priority where they may. But just this one time, when it happens, I hope Henrik takes a little of it in for himself, feels some selfish pride, and basks in his moment. As Canucks fans, we are truly the fortunate ones to have you as one of ours. Thank you, Henrik, we are honoured to share this moment with when it happens, you’re truly our best.