Fans pile into GM Place tonight as Trevor Lindens #16 is retired
Vancouver, B.C. - In an emotional pre-game ceremony earlier this evening at General Motors Place, Trevor Linden's number 16 was raised to the rafters joining Stan Smyl's number 12; the only two numbers retired in Canucks franchise history.
Hockey Hall of Fame broadcaster Jim Robson and Canucks current play-by-play broadcaster, John Shorthouse hosted the ceremony attended by Linden's family, friends, former teammates and a sold-out crowd prior to puck drop in Vancouver's game versus the Edmonton Oilers. Ten of Linden's former teammates took part in the ceremony, as well as members of the Canucks management team and the Aquilini family. National Hockey League Commissioner, Gary Bettman and Deputy Commissioner, Bill Daly along with long-time representative and friend Don Meehan were also on-ice to witness Linden's number 16 retired.
The event featured speeches from significant influences in Linden's life including longtime friend and former teammate Stan Smyl, former Canucks Coach and General Manager, Pat Quinn (via video) and Pam Keith, Canucks for Kids Fund Director and former Ronald McDonald House Executive Director. Linden, who was joined by his wife Cristina, parents Lane and Edna and brothers Dean and Jamie, addressed the fans with an eight minute speech prior to his number 16 being retired.
Ceremony highlights included: the presentation of an annual $10,000 Trevor Linden Spirit of Community Scholarship, Linden being presented with a trip for two to the 2009 Masters by the Aquilini Family and Canucks Sports & Entertainment, and Canucks teammates Roberto Luongo, Mattias Ohlund and Willie Mitchell providing Linden with a comprehensive heli-skiing package for two on behalf of the players.
Linden's number 16 joins Stan Smyl's number 12 as the only retired numbers in club history. Smyl had his number retired on November 3, 1991 at the Pacific Coliseum.
The full ceremony at GM Place will be available Thursday, December 18 on Canucks.com.
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