blank'/> THE PUCK REPORT: Today In NHL History - Queen Visits Canucks

Friday, October 6, 2023

Today In NHL History - Queen Visits Canucks

On October 6th in 2002, Queen Elizabeth II visited Vancouver as part of her Golden Jubilee tour, participating in a ceremonial puck drop during a preseason game between the Vancouver Canucks and San Jose Sharks.

Accompanied by Wayne GretzkyHowie Meeker and 2002 Winter Olympics Team Canada gold medalists Cassie Campbell and Ed Jovanovski, the 76 year old British monarch was welcomed with a standing ovation by the sold out Rogers Arena crowd. After the puck drop, Canucks captain Markus Naslund retrieved the rubber and handed it to the Queen. When asked by Her Majesty if he'd like to keep the puck, Naslund responded, "we've got lots, thanks". The puck made its way to the Royal Archives, where it remains to this day. Sharks forward Mike Ricci participated in the ceremony that night, raising questions as to why team captain Owen Nolan was not present. Some suggest it was a rest day on back-to-back preseason games. Others point to Nolan's Northern Ireland roots and the troubled history between the regions, choosing not to be seen with the Queen.

Despite departing after the first frame, the Canucks delivered a win for the Queen on this historic evening beating the Sharks by a score of 3-2.

That's today in NHL history.