Darcy Hordichuk is an exciting team addition for Canuck fans of Ukrainian descent, and of special pride to those who hail from Darcy's hometown of Kamsack, Saskatchewan ... or thereabouts.
This dedicated, determined professional athlete is drop-dead gorgeous and by all accounts an all-round nice guy well-loved by fans, friends and family. According to this article, he is also very proud of his Ukrainian small-town roots ... much to the chagrin of his wife who can't seem to get the hang of Ukrainian cookery.
Q. You're from a Ukrainian background and you love your perogies and cabbage rolls and borscht. Is your wife also of Ukrainian descent?
A. No, she's got some Swedish in her and some Irish. She's an American, from Fresno, California...
Q. Have you managed to convince her of the delights of Ukrainian food? Is she a fan?
A. Oh, yeah. That's one of the things you have to do if you want to be a Hordichuk. You have to like my Baba's cooking... It's tough on my wife because I want her to make the perogies and borscht and she can't do it quite like Baba. The standards are pretty high.
Hmm, well I suppose he could always suggest she try volunteering for a local perogy supper to get some experience... :-)
He's a pretty scrappy guy with a (well-deserved, apparently) rep as a brawler. If that sort of thing turns your crank, he's got a fight gallery on his website. Here's a recent scrap:
Personally I think brawls tend to kill the momentum of the game but I also appreciate that for a lot of hockey fans fights make the game. So I guess the NHL has found a balance of sorts...
But being a pacifist, I was pleased to see that Darcy has a softer side that has him keeping in touch pretty regularly with his fans via his website and blog, as well as the Canucks players blog.
And another surprise - he's an unabashed, outspoken Christian. He tells the story of his life, career, and faith here:
This season is turning out to be pretty exciting for Canucks fans, after a dry spell following the end of the Bertuzzi/Burke era. So I'm looking forward to seeing more of Darcy and his team-mates on TV. And who knows, maybe he'll bring the missus to a perogy supper somewhere in Metro Vancouver one of these Fridays. (You can find out where there are, and when, at the NH website.)