Sunday, April 11, 2010
Born on this date in 1970, Trevor Linden was drafted second over all by the Vancouver Canucks in the 1988 NHL Entry Draft.
Before joining the Canucks, Linden played for the Medicine Hat Tigers of the Western Hockey League and won back to back Memorial Cups, including scoring 13 goals and 25 points in 16 games in 1988.
Once with Vancouver, he made an immediate impact, scoring 30 goals as a rookie. In his third year with the Canucks, he hit the 70 point mark for the first of three consecutive seasons and was named team captain at the age of 21. During the 1994 playoffs, Linden helped lead the Canucks to the Stanley Cup Finals with 25 points in 24 games as Vancouver took the New York Rangers all the way to a Game 7.
Linden would set a career high in 1995-96 with 80 points, which included equalling his career high with 33 goals, which he accomplished three times.
After ten seasons, an emotional Linden was traded by the notorious trade happy Mike Keenan to the New York Islanders, where he played for the remainder of the 1997-98 season and all of the next season before being dealt to the Montreal Canadiens for two seasons, which were hampered by injuries that limited him to 50 games the first season. After 57 games during his second season in Montreal, Linden was again on the move, this time to the Washington Captials for a brief stint of 12 games at the end of 2000-01 and the first 16 games of 2001-02 before finally heading home to Vancouver after wandering in the hockey wilderness for four years.
Now back with Vancouver, Linden played six more seasons, giving him 16 seasons with the Canucks, an all-time franchise high. He became the first player to skate in 1,000 games for the Canucks in 2005-06, became the first Canuck to score 300 goals in 2006-07 and retired as the franchise's all-time leading scorer.
Regarded as one of the classiest players in the league, Linden finished his 19 season NHL career with 375 goals, 492 assists and 867 points and was named the recipient of the King Clancy Trophy in 1997. In 1998, Linden's #16 was retired by the Canucks, only the second number retired by the Canucks in their 30 year history after Stan Smyl's #12 in 1991.
Not content with just playing and going home, Linden also was a player representative for the Canucks since 1990 and was elected president of the National Hockey League Player's Assoication (NHLPA) in 1998. Additionally, he has been involved in many charitable community service projects, as well as the Trevor Linden Foundation, which has earned him great respect and admiration in the Vancouver community as well as the Order of British Columbia in 2003.
Internationally, Linden played for Team Canada five times, first winning gold medal at the 1988 World Juniors, a silver medals at the 1991 World Championships and the 1996 World Cup of Hockey and playing in the 1998 Olympics and 1998 World Championships.
Today's featured jersey is a CCM 1994-95 Vancouver Canucks Trevor Linden jersey. This jersey features the Canucks 25th Anniversary patch and the Canuck Place patch.
Today's video section begins with a career retrospective of Linden's career and documents some of the more unfortunate jerseys he had to wear during his early days with Vancouver!
Here, Linden has the honor of carrying the Olympic torch prior to the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver.