Bruce Boudreau will have a piece of the Vancouver Canucks with him in his home after a Canucks fan sent him a custom “Bruce, there it is” jersey.
Boudreau may have only been the head coach of the Vancouver Canucks for a little over 13 months, but he made a unique impact on Canucks fans.
Typically when an NHL coach gets fired, fans are all too willing to boot that coach out the door, as it usually comes after an extended period of falling short. In fact, the fans are normally the ones calling for the coach to get fired in the first place.
Not this time.
Canucks fans fell in love with Boudreau partly because he kicked off his coaching tenure in Vancouver with a seven-game winning streak and nine-game point streak but also because of his genial and gregarious personality. He cracked jokes in post-game interviews, gleefully discussed his love of professional wrestling, and was willing to make ludicrous Cameo videos for Canucks fans.
Boudreau became so beloved so quickly that fans came up with a chant just for him at Canucks games: “Bruce, there it is!” to the rhythm of Tag Team’s 90’s hit “Whoomp! (There it is).”
That led to one Canucks season ticket holder with a passion for jerseys embracing the “Bruce, there it is” chant and getting his own custom jersey made with the slogan, with the number “15” taking the place of the word “is” in the popular chant.
The fan, who goes by Chester Ming on Twitter, had earlier caused a stir with a custom “Thank You Jim” jersey as his way of calling for Jim Benning to be fired as general manager of the Canucks. The “Bruce, there it is” jersey was the good-natured flipside of that jersey.
“I figured it was a funny ‘positive’ follow up to the ‘Thank you Jim’ jersey,” said Chester. “I originally got it last Christmas during the initial seven-game winning streak.”
Chester even got the jersey signed by Boudreau at the final home game of the 2021-22 season, with the Canucks’ cameras catching the moment.
Though Boudreau initially said he didn’t like the “Bruce, there it is” chant, it was primarily because he didn’t want to pull focus away from the players as they went on a phenomenal run under Boudreau in the 2021-22 season.
Boudreau came to appreciate it, particularly at the end of his time in Vancouver, as fans serenaded him with the chant during his final games as head coach of the Canucks.
“It’s unbelievable,” he said. “I’ve only been here a year, but it’ll go down in my memory books, out of the 48 years I’ve played and coached, as the most incredible thing I’ve experienced on a personal level — other than winning championships, of course. It’s very touching.”
After Boudreau’s wife, Crystal, shared a message on Twitter thanking Vancouver, Chester reached out, wondering if Boudreau wanted the jersey.
“I asked if it would mean anything if I wanted to gift this to them,” said Chester. “I figured it might mean a lot more to them than me at this point.”
Crystal Boudreau happily accepted the offer and the jersey arrived at their home on Wednesday.
Chester added that the Boudreau’s plan on framing the jersey to hang it up in their house. Now Boudreau will always have a reminder of the love of Canucks fans.