British Columbia

Vancouver Canucks 'bandwagon' fans come out for NHL playoffs

The Vancouver Canucks qualifying for the NHL playoffs means an increased number of "fans" in the city, much to the disdain of some diehard followers.

Canucks face Calgary Flames for first playoff game on Wednesday at 7 p.m. PT on CBC TV

Canucks fans are getting set to see their team back in the Stanley Cup playoffs. (CBC)

For hockey fans, springtime means the NHL playoffs are here. With the weather heating up and flowers coming into bloom, there's one more thing set to make an appearance: Locals jumping onto the Canucks bandwagon.

The Vancouver Canucks face their first playoff game this season, against their Western Canadian rivals the Calgary Flames, on Wednesday.

But while an inflated fan base is a good thing for bars, restaurants and local businesses, it's not always a welcome sight for some of the more avid Canucks followers.

"Every team experiences bandwagoners, but I find in Vancouver it's more apparent," says Mickey Ng, a Canucks fan since 1993. "I'm not too fond of them. Where were they for the last 82 games?"

The Vancouver Canucks face the Calgary Flames on April 15 at Rogers Arena. Puck drop is at 7 p.m. PT on CBC TV. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press)

Interest in this year's playoff run will be aided by the fact that the team failed to qualify last season. That year-long hiatus is dwarfed by the Calgary Flames who will be playing in their first playoff game since 2009.

The more the merrier?

While some of the more strict followers won't be thrilled to share their team with less experienced fans, others see it as an opportunity to increase the excitement in the city.

"The bandwagoners make the discussions more fun. It certainly makes it more interesting," JJ Guerrero, the founder of Canucks Hockey Blog told CBC.

"When it comes to this time of the year, you can't deny the chance for fans to cheer on their team."

The Vancouver Canucks face the Calgary Flames on April 15 at Rogers Arena. Puck drop is at 7 p.m. PT on CBC TV.

To hear more about the Canucks fan fever, listen to the audio labelled: Vancouver Canucks bandwagon fans come out for NHL playoffs.

Poll: Are you a Canucks bandwagoner?