Most Vancouver Canucks players have public Instagram profiles through which fans can follow their lives during the pandemic. Here’s a complete list.
With the NHL suspended as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, there is very little for Vancouver Canucks fans to do at the moment. Some have solved the boredom by engaging in contentious debates on Twitter, while others have theorized about when and how the league can return.
However, one could take the pause as a time to get to know some of the players that suited up for the Canucks while games were in action. This may be a daunting task given the unfortunate tendency for many hockey player interviews to be bland affairs. However, there is one tool available that gives a little more insight as to who these players are: Instagram.
Most of the Canucks players have public Instagram accounts through which they are free to express themselves, and many do. From dogs to spouses to Bill Murray, Instagram has become a smorgasbord of personality as far as Canuck players are concerned.
Therefore, I have decided to provide a list of the profiles belonging to each Canuck, at least those who have made their profiles public for all to see, as well as several future Canucks waiting for their big break. I will add that several players do not have public accounts, instead opting for private profiles, known only to friends and family.
Jordie Benn (@jordiebenn)
Brock Boeser (@bboeser)
Thatcher Demko (@tdemko30)
Louis Domingue (@louisdomingue)
Oscar Fantenberg (@fantenberg7)
Micheal Ferland (@ferdaddy79)
Adam Gaudette (@hockey_gaud)
Bo Horvat (@bohorvat)
Quinn Hughes (@_quinnhughes)
Josh Leivo (@jleivs)
Zack MacEwen (@macewen66)
Jacob Markstrom (@markstrom25)
JT Miller (@j.tmiller9)
Tyler Motte (@tmotte_14)
Tanner Pearson (@tannerjpearson)
Elias Pettersson (@_eliaspettersson)
Antoine Roussel (@rouss_ant)
Troy Stecher (@troystecher)
Chris Tanev (@tanevchris)
Tyler Toffoli (@tofff73)
Jake Virtanen (@jakevirtanen18)
Nils Hoglander (@nilshoglander)
Kole Lind (@kl16_)
Vasili Podkolzin (@podkol_)
Brogan Rafferty (@broganrafferty)
Jack Rathbone (@jack.rathbone)
Jett Woo (@jettwoo_)
In most cases, the players rarely post any other than the same generic content that you or I might post. Family pictures, pets, beautiful landscapes, to name a few themes. Occasionally, the generics are permeated by the odd promotion of some sponsored product, or an in-game photo taken by one of the many photographers present during each match.
If anything, this reinforces the reality that at the end of the day, NHL players are, in fact, human beings, with their own lives. We can actually relate to the Canucks as evolving individuals in a way that is not possible by watching on television.
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For example, in the seven years since he was drafted, Horvat has grown from a teenager to an NHL captain, a husband, and very soon, a father. Thanks to Instagram, Canucks fans have been able to be with him every step of the way, and will be for years to come, perhaps as he becomes as celebrated a Canuck as the Sedins.
Throughout last summer, it was through his Instagram story that Boeser shared the news of his ailing father, allowing fans to empathize in ways that were not possible just a decade ago.
Fans received another dose of Boeser’s human side just this week when he posted in memorial of a young fan that he had met on one of his visits to BC Children’s Hospital.
On a lighter note, Instagram is the only reason Canucks fans know the life of Riley Tanev, which is so much better for everyone.
However, on a broader level, Instagram can tell a story. A story of seasons gone by and events that have turned Canucks nation on its head, told from a completely different perspective. Canucks fans took the 2018 retirement of the Sedin Twins and the subsequent jersey retirement ceremony to express their gratitude to the two greatest to ever play here, just as their teammates did the same.
We got to experience the uncertainty of the Toffoli trade through Toffoli himself, who was celebrating a hat trick in what would be his final game as a Los Angeles King, unaware that his next post would be thanking that organization for eight incredible years.
Finally, we can look to the future by getting to know the young players that could be the face of the franchise within just a few years, while reminding ourselves that Canucks prospects are still young men with a lot to prove and a tremendous mission to do so ahead of them. One can understand their likes and interests, and in some cases, understand why Vancouver will be an amazing city for them to live.
Instagram is not the first place one thinks of to get to know the team that they cheer for, but it is undoubtedly a valuable tool for doing so. I encourage each one of you to follow these players that want to give us a peek into their lives and respect the privacy of those that do not.