It’s been a lot of fun counting down the top 10 Pavel Bure moments for Vancity Buzz and Rob The Hockey Guy, but all good things must come to an end. Here is the #1 Pavel Bure moment in a Canucks uniform: the 1994 playoff run.
The spring of 1994 was the best time to be a Canucks fan. The team had underachieved during the regular season, finishing 7th in the conference, but they caught fire in the playoffs after being down 3-1 in their first round series against the Calgary Flames. They rattled off three straight wins, all in overtime. The series clinching goal was scored by Pavel Bure in double overtime and is the most famous goal in Canucks history.
That set-up a second round matchup with the Dallas Stars. Dallas were also the favourite, but the Canucks dusted them off in 5 games. The series was most remembered for Bure KO’ing Shane Churla in game 2, but he also had 6 goals in 5 games. It was Bure’s most dominant series in 1994.
So it was off to the conference finals against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Leafs took game 1 and were poised to make it to the Stanley Cup Final after being eliminated in game 7 of the conference final the year before. Instead, the Canucks rattled off four straight to the hated Leafs. The series was capped off by a double overtime goal by Greg Adams in game 5. Bure was great again, notching 7 points in 5 games.
The Stanley Cup Final didn’t end as everyone in Vancouver had hoped, but Bure was spectacular. He had 8 points in 7 games, including two goals in game 5 when the team was trailing 3-1 in the series.
Bure was sensational in the 1994 playoffs. He led the Canucks in goals, assists and points. Nobody in the league had more goals then Bure and only Brian Leetch finished with more points. What was extra impressive about Bure’s performance was the flare in which he scored while being a marked man by every single team he played.
Pavel Bure is without a doubt the most exciting player in Canucks history and one of the most exciting players in hockey history. He’s the biggest reason the Canucks became a good team in the 1990s and a turned a lot of people into lifelong Canucks fans.
It has been 15 years since Bure last played a game for the Canucks so Saturday’s jersey retirement ceremony promises to be extra emotional. The only hall-of-famer in team history is a Canuck again.