When it comes to paying tribute to Vancouver Canucks great Gino Odjick, most folks would go the greatest-hits route.
The time the former number 29 beat up the half the St. Blues team in a single shift during the playoffs. Gino using his first game to announce he was ready to do the job he was brought up to do—after taking on Chicago Blackhawks defenceman Dave “Charlie” Manson, he later in the game punched his way to a punishing draw with Stu “The Grim Reaper” Grimson.
First suiting up for the Canucks on November 21, 1990, Odjick was more than an enforcer—the man sometimes known as the Maniwaki Mauler didn’t just fight. Going along with the 102 penalty minutes collected in his first 14 NHL games were three goals. The 1993-94 season saw him register 29 points, including 16 goals.
And then there’s his folk-hero status both on the ice and off. Remember when, back in the 2014, he was diagnosed with rare terminal disease AL amyloidosis and given only months to live. And yet today he’s still rolling right along, his life after hockey devoted to such pursuits as the Gino Odjick Foundation which earmarks money for the training of First Nations youth.
All this brings us to the new video for the Geoff Berner tune “Gino Odjick”. Written back in 2011 for a Dave Bidini’s Hockey Day in Canada event in Whitehorse, the track will get a second life on the Vancouver accordionist and poet’s upcoming album Canadiana Grotesquica.
Watch and listen as Berner not only celebrates Odjick’s famous pugilistic prowess, but pays tribute to the Maniwaki Mauler’s status an astute businessman and even greater human being.
And big props to the mashup video’s creator Andrew Pearson, partly because he clearly understands that there are few things more life-affirming in this world than watching Gino Odjick beat up (seen bonus video below) an entire line of the St. Louis Blues.