January 30, 2010
GM Place About To Get A Soul
This is what GM Place looks like, but starting today the IOC and VANOC start tearing down any reference to General Motors and the Vancouver Canucks. Even though General Motors pays big money for the naming rights, and even though the Canucks own the building, there is to be no corporate sponsorship allowed at the Olympics, after all. (Yeah, right!)
It's a great hockey arena, but it is far from a grand ol' sports stadium. Aside from a Canadian gold medal at the 2006 WJCs and Trevor Linden's jersey retirement ceremony, this building is better known for playoff failures and lots of violence - think Marty McSorley, Todd Bertuzzi and the infamous Guns 'N Roses riot.
Sports stadiums become cathedrals only after many great moments and championships. Think the Montreal Forum or Yankee Stadium. In this era of cookie cutter arenas with no heart and soul, fans long for the stadiums of old.
GM Place, rechristened Canada Hockey Place for the next few weeks, takes a major step towards achieving legendary status by hosting the Olympics.