The Vancouver Canucks have had a number of ugly jerseys over the years. Despite the condition of this game worn gem, this wool sweater from the 1950s is not one of them.
That's right. 1950s. The record books tell you that the Vancouver Canucks started in the National Hockey League in 1970, which is true. But before that they existed dating back to the 1945 in the old Western Hockey League (the professional league, not to be mistaken with the long running junior league.)
This sweater recently sold at auction for just $853 USD. While it is a game worn wool sweater, there is much mystery behind it. We don't know exactly whose it is, and it may have been worn by more than one player.
It was very common back then to reuse sweaters from season to season to season. And of course there were no no name plates until the 1970s.
As the auction website details, the sweater is identified as being from the 1952-53 and 1955-56 seasons. In that time both Hugh Currie and Jack Lancien both wore the sweater number five and served as team captain (Currie in 1952-53 and Lancien in the 1953-54 and 1954-55).
It is a beautiful sweater and one day I hope the current day Canucks honour this part of their history with a special event jersey recreation of this era.