Iain MacIntyre: Pat Quinn was Canucks' royalty

 

 
 
 
 
Pat Quinn, shown yelling behind the bench with veteran Russ Courtnall (left) and a young Markus Naslund right) in front. Quinn (1991 to 1994 and 1996) was the 11th head coach in the history of the Vancouver Canucks NHL franchise. DID YOU KNOW: ‘The Big Irishman’ had a long, largely successful association with the Canucks both as a coach and a GM, the highlight being a Game 7 Stanley Cup final appearance against the (ultimately victorious) New York Rangers. In his own right, Quinn became the first Canucks coach to win the Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s coach of the year (1991-92).
 
 

Pat Quinn, shown yelling behind the bench with veteran Russ Courtnall (left) and a young Markus Naslund right) in front. Quinn (1991 to 1994 and 1996) was the 11th head coach in the history of the Vancouver Canucks NHL franchise. DID YOU KNOW: ‘The Big Irishman’ had a long, largely successful association with the Canucks both as a coach and a GM, the highlight being a Game 7 Stanley Cup final appearance against the (ultimately victorious) New York Rangers. In his own right, Quinn became the first Canucks coach to win the Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s coach of the year (1991-92).

Photograph by: Peter Battistoni, Vancouver Sun files

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Pat Quinn was the nearest thing to a king that the Vancouver Canucks ever had.

With Trevor Linden as his prince, Quinn not only transformed the National Hockey League franchise, he pretty much saved it after his arrival in 1987. When he was fired a decade later by owner John McCaw, who quickly tried to hire him back as coach, Quinn left behind an expectation of excellence that he installed and remains to this day.

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Quinn died Sunday at age 71 after a lengthy illness, but his impact on the Canuck organization is still evident. Subsequent general managers Brian Burke and Dave Nonis were originally hired by Quinn to their first jobs in NHL management. Linden, who captained Quinn's team that went to the 1994 Stanley Cup final, is now the Canucks' president of hockey operations. Chief operating officer Victor de Bonis started in the Canucks' finance department under Quinn and said in an interview last winter that it was like meeting the Pope when he was introduced to the boss.

Quinn commanded a room - any room - like few others. He commanded hockey teams, too. Including earlier assignments with the Philadelphia Flyers and Los Angeles Kings and later ones with the Toronto Maple Leafs and Edmonton Oilers, Quinn finished his NHL coaching career with a record of 684-528-188.

Honoured with the rest of the 1994 Canuck team at the Heritage Classic game last February in Vancouver, Quinn made it clear that no place touched his heart like this one did.

"I worked for some good organizations, but (they did) not have the influence on me and the emotional attachment that the Canucks did," he said. "People always ask me (about the 1994 Cup final): 'What do you remember about the games?' Well, I don't remember much about the games but I remember the people."

Those people remember Quinn, too.

"If you think about a great general or a great president, there's just something about those people that elevate them forever," de Bonis said before the Canucks honoured Quinn last April. "And I think that's what Pat had. I don't think if he even knew he had it."

 
 
 
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Pat Quinn, shown yelling behind the bench with veteran Russ Courtnall (left) and a young Markus Naslund right) in front. Quinn (1991 to 1994 and 1996) was the 11th head coach in the history of the Vancouver Canucks NHL franchise. DID YOU KNOW: ‘The Big Irishman’ had a long, largely successful association with the Canucks both as a coach and a GM, the highlight being a Game 7 Stanley Cup final appearance against the (ultimately victorious) New York Rangers. In his own right, Quinn became the first Canucks coach to win the Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s coach of the year (1991-92).
 

Pat Quinn, shown yelling behind the bench with veteran Russ Courtnall (left) and a young Markus Naslund right) in front. Quinn (1991 to 1994 and 1996) was the 11th head coach in the history of the Vancouver Canucks NHL franchise. DID YOU KNOW: ‘The Big Irishman’ had a long, largely successful association with the Canucks both as a coach and a GM, the highlight being a Game 7 Stanley Cup final appearance against the (ultimately victorious) New York Rangers. In his own right, Quinn became the first Canucks coach to win the Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s coach of the year (1991-92).

Photograph by: Peter Battistoni, Vancouver Sun files

 
Pat Quinn, shown yelling behind the bench with veteran Russ Courtnall (left) and a young Markus Naslund right) in front. Quinn (1991 to 1994 and 1996) was the 11th head coach in the history of the Vancouver Canucks NHL franchise. DID YOU KNOW: ‘The Big Irishman’ had a long, largely successful association with the Canucks both as a coach and a GM, the highlight being a Game 7 Stanley Cup final appearance against the (ultimately victorious) New York Rangers. In his own right, Quinn became the first Canucks coach to win the Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s coach of the year (1991-92).
Pat Quinn was the nearest thing to a king that the Vancouver Canucks ever had, says columnist Iain MacIntyre. Quinn died Sunday at age 71 after a lengthy illness.
Former Vancouver Canuck coach and player Pat Quinn died Sunday night at Vancouver General Hospital.
Before the Vancouver Canucks final regular-season game at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, B.C. Sunday, April 13, 2014, the team honours Pat Quinn, right. Former Vancouver Canuck coach and player Pat Quinn died Sunday night at Vancouver General Hospital.
Pat Quinn was the nearest thing to a king that the Vancouver Canucks ever had, says columnist Iain MacIntyre. Quinn died Sunday at age 71 after a lengthy illness.
Before the Vancouver Canucks final regular-season game at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, B.C. Sunday, April 13, 2014, the team honours Pat Quinn. Beloved former Vancouver Canucks' coach, player and general manager and Vancouver Giants co-owner Pat Quinn has died at Vancouver General Hospital Sunday night after a lengthy illness.
Canucks GM Pat Quinn and new Vancouver Canuck Mark Messier at press conference.
Mr Hockey Gordie Howe (left) and Pat Quinn give Marcel Dionne (right) a hard time as he signs an autograph before they go out onto the ice at the Coliseum for Howe's 80th birthday party.
Hockey Hall of Fame inductee Brendan Shanahan is presented with his ring by Chairman Pat Quinn (right) and Chair of the selection committee Jim Gregory at the Hall in Toronto on Friday November 8, 2013.
Edmonton Oilers head coach Pat Quinn waits for the hockey players to hit the ice at Rexall Place in Edmonton, Alberta for training camp on Sunday September 13 2009.
Pat Quinn listens as Trevor Linden tells a story during a Vancouver Giants game in 2012. The Canucks' new president of hockey will be on hand as the team inducts Quinn into the Ring of Honour in Sunday's otherwise disappointing season finale.
Pat Quinn watches the scrimmage at Oilers Rookie camp at Rexall Place. Quinn coaches the Oilers during the 2009-10 season.
Pat Quinn hockey player, coach and manger (left) is invested as Officer to the Order of Canada by Governor General David Johnston at Rideau Hall, the official residence of the Governor General, in Ottawa Friday November 23, 2012.
Rick Ley was 29-32-15 when was fired 76 games into 1996-96 season and replaced by Pat Quinn.
Captain Thomas Hickey sits with head coach Pat Quinn of Canada's National Junior Hockey Team for the official team photo.
A comic about Pat Quinn's hiring with the Edmonton Oilers.
Pat Quinn, Head Coach for Canada, coaches his team practice in preparation for the Gold medal match against Sweden.
L toR Pat Quinn, actor Jackson Davies  and Michael J. Fox who hosted the annual golf tourney the benefit of The Michael J. Fox Theatre at Riverway golf course in Burnaby, B. C., June 4, 2010.
June 16/90 file photo of Vancouver Canucks coach pat Quinn (smoking cigar on the right) with Brian Burke.
Pat Quinn, Canucks GM, talks trades after 1997 trade deadline.
Vancouver Giants co-owner Pat Quinn talks to reporters following the Western Hockey League team’s season-introductory news conference at the Pacific Coliseum in Vancouver on Monday, Sept. 17, 2012.
Alex Burrows didn't just grow up in Montreal, he grew up battling Guy Lapointe for net front position. Sure, Burrows was the only guy wearing a helmet at the time. But he was just a kid. What did you expect? Not long after this game, Lapointe took him to a Moody Blues concert. Also pictured, #3 Pat Quinn Canucks and #1 (goal) Charlie Hodge
Guy Boucher served as assistant coach to Pat Quinn for Team Canada at the World Junior Hockey Tourament in Ottawa.
Pat Quinn (1991 to 1994 and 1996) was the 11th head coach in the history of the Vancouver Canucks NHL franchise. DID YOU KNOW: ‘The Big Irishman’ had a long, largely successful association with the Canucks both as a coach and a GM, the highlight being a Game 7 Stanley Cup final appearance against the (ultimately victorious) New York Rangers. In his own right, Quinn became the first Canucks coach to win the Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s coach of the year (1991-92).
Team captain Cassie Campbell, representing Canada’s women’s national hockey team, at Thursday’s news conference where the 2002 gold medal-winning club was inducted into the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame. Here she’s flanked by Team Canada’s men’s coach Pat Quinn (left) and Hockey Canada president Bob Nicholson, representing the men’s 2002 gold medal-winning team that was also inducted.
Pat Quinn was the general manager of the Vancouver Canucks during the shortened 1994-95 NHL season.
Oilers coach Pat Quinn blasts Iginla for 'pretty dirty play'
The 1994 Vancouver Canucks, who went to the NHL's Stanley Cup final, are joined by their coach Pat Quinn on the red carpet prior to the 2014 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic at BC Place Stadium Sunday March 2, 2014 in Vancouver. The Vancouver Canucks lost to the Ottawa Senators, 4-2.
Vancouver Canuck 1st yr. Coach Tom Renney (left) and G.M Pat Quinn react to tough questioning by local media over the team's dissmal season and missing the playoffs for the first time since 1990.
Pat Quinn shakes hands with Stan Smyl as Trevor Linden, Cliff Ronning and Gino Odjick stand by prior to NHL Heritage Classic with Vancouver Canucks vs Ottawa Senators at BC Place Stadium in Vancouver on March 2, 2014.
Pat Quinn hams it up for the cameras at the press conference announcing his appointment as coach of the 2002 Team Canada squad.
Pat Quinn (1991 to 1994 and 1996) was the 11th head coach in the history of the Vancouver Canucks NHL franchise. DID YOU KNOW: ‘The Big Irishman’ had a long, largely successful association with the Canucks both as a coach and a GM, the highlight being a Game 7 Stanley Cup final appearance against the (ultimately victorious) New York Rangers. In his own right, Quinn became the first Canucks coach to win the Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s coach of the year (1991-92).
Before the Vancouver Canucks final regular-season game at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, B.C. Sunday, April 13, 2014, the team honour Pat Quinn.
November 1 1991. Canucks player Pavel Bure and Pat Quinn.
August 20, 1995: Gino Odjick wipes his brow during a rest stop on his Spirit of Healing tour, while Vancouver Canuck GM Pat Quinn looks on.
 
 
 
 
 
 
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