Pavel Bure’s time to have his No. 10 jersey with the Vancouver Canucks retired to the rafters of Rogers Arena has officially come.
Bure was in the house Tuesday night, as the Canucks made the announcement during their Summer Summit for seasons ticket holders.
A specific date for this event has not been set.
During his seven seasons in Vancouver, Bure, dubbed the ‘Russian Rocket’ for his exhilarating speed and skill, electrified the local fan base and was an instrumental part in the franchise’s rise to prominence during the early 1990s.
Bure took questions from the fans and was grinning throughout the night. He left the stage to a standing ovation.
His presence in Rogers Arena was reported before he even made his way on to the stage, where he sat alongside Canucks general manager Mike Gillis, current head coach John Tortorella and host of the evening, Barry MacDonald of the Team 1040.
“It’s a huge honour,” he told reporters about having his jersey retired.
“I’m just really proud and happy…it just bring lots of good memories to be next to those great guys.”
He’s referring, of course, to Stan Smyl, Trevor Linden and Markus Naslund, who are the only three players in franchise history to have their jersey numbers retired.
Bure’s time with the Canucks, which began on Nov. 5, 1991, was not without its controversy.
On the ice, he could bring the crowds to their feet and provided an array of highlight-reel moments throughout his tenure in Vancouver.
All totaled, he scored 254 goals and 478 points in 428 games with the Canucks.
During the team’s run to the Stanley Cup Final in 1994, he scored 16 goals and had 31 points, as the Canucks lost in the seventh game of the championship series to the New York Rangers.
However, injuries hampered his later years in Vancouver, and his playing career here eventually came to a conclusion with a bitter trade demand, in which he sat out the start of the 1998-99 season before eventually getting dealt to Florida.
This has caused many fans to be split over whether or not Bure deserves to have his jersey retired. He chose not to reflect on that contentious issue.
“I’m just happy (with) what I have,” said Bure.
Bure was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame last November.
It was believed Canucks owner Francesco Aquilini visited Bure in Florida last year, however Bure said Aquilini actually visited him during his Hall of Fame induction.
“That was a really big deal for me,” said Bure.