Canucks' second line not nickname-worthy yet

By Nick Greenizan

The newest member of the Vancouver Canucks, left winger David Booth, will make his debut for his new team tonight, when the Canucks face off against the Edmonton Oilers.

Booth will wear No. 7 – switching from the No. 10 he wore in Florida in honour of his younger sister, who also wears 7 – and it’s expected he’ll play on the second line alongside Ryan Kesler, his old minor-hockey teammate, and Chris Higgins, his old pal from Florida (Higgins was with the Panthers until his trade deadline deal to Vancouver last spring).

Right from the second the trade was announced, it was assumed, correctly in this case, that the 26-year-old Booth would be paired on a line with the aforementioned duo. Then the media realized – quickly – that all three forwards were American.

And then everyone’s  heads exploded.

Or something like that.

You see, in the Vancouver media market – on the radio, in the paper, and in online in the Twitterverse, people have spent the last three days coming up with catchy names for the new trio, all based on the fact that they all come from the same country. Among the contenders: All-America Line, The American Express, and similar suggestions of that ilk.

And it wasn’t just the fans, either. Website held online polls for fans to vote on the best name. The local sports radio station auditioned various theme music – to be played at Rogers Arena, of course, each time the line combines to one of the hundreds and hundreds of goals they’re sure to score.

All this for a line that HAS YET TO PLAY A SINGLE GAME as a three-man unit. Honestly people, it’s ridiculous.

Yes, I understand that the naming of lines is fun for the fans and media alike, and it is something of a lost art – Philadelphia had the Legion of Doom with Lindros, Renberg and Leclair and Vancouver’s top line of Naslund-Bertuzzi-Morrison was dubbed the West Coast Express a few year ago, but aside from that, named lines are few and far between.

But even those lines spent months together before they were bestowed such an honour. They had to earn it, or that’s not quite the right word, they at least had to stick together awhile.

And that’s the problem with this Yankee Doodle line – they could have zero chemistry and be busted up by the second period tonight. I’m not saying that it will happen, as the three players in question would seem, on paper at least, to be nice fits for each other. But given Canucks head coach Alain Vigneault’s track record (ie: patience) with most of his lines, is it really that far-fetched to think that he might mix it up if the team struggles out of the gate.

So while the rest of the hockey world falls over itself to come up with the catchiest moniker, I’ll suggest one myself.

How about the Three Guys Who Haven’t Played A Single Game Together Yet Line.

Has a nice ring to it, no?

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