Fans flying south for Ducks battle

BOB MACKIN -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:40 AM ET

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Alaska Airlines' flight 638 from YVR to LAX yesterday morning could have been renamed "flight Salo-Bieksa-Mitchell."

Dozens of jersey-wearing Canucks' fans were aboard for the journey to see their team begin the Western conference semifinal series against the Anaheim Ducks. Hours before the opener, opinions varied on how Vancouver would fare.

For Adam Schwartz and his buddies, it's the ultimate guys road trip. They were already scheduled to play in a poker tournament at the Playboy Mansion before Vancouver beat Dallas in seven games. They are just as eager to see the Canucks win in Anaheim as they are to see Hugh Hefner and his bevy of beautiful blonde bunnies on the weekend.

"We're playing desperation hockey," said Schwartz, host of Team 1040's Sunday night Rounders show. "Anaheim's had a few days off, Game 1's our good shot."

Dan Idema disagreed.

"Game 1 doesn't seem like it's in our favour," Idema said. "The boys are going to do a lot of work out there. It's going to be tough."

Brian and Michelle Soregaroli brought five-year-old Natasha and seven-year-old Cameron to Disneyland and are in the market for Game 2 tickets.

"Game 1 is going to go to the Ducks because the Canucks are going to be tired and the Ducks are a very strong team," Brian Soregaroli said. "Game 2 we'll be in the stands to cheer on a victory."

Mike Powar and his friends were hoping to see a Canucks' win last night before heading inland to the three-day Coachella Music Festival where they'll see Bjork, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Rage Against the Machine.

"Canucks in five," Powar said. "It rests on Luongo's back. He's in the zone, we don't know what can happen. Trevor will pull through, I hope 'Nazzy' can bust it out."


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