Bert won't be back

BOB MACKIN -- 24 Hours Vancouver

, Last Updated: 9:33 AM ET

Vancouver Canucks have another Todd Bertuzzi problem. The controversial ex-Canuck is gone four to eight weeks from the Florida Panthers as he continues to recover from back surgery, so don't expect him in the lineup for the Panthers' Jan. 7 visit to General Motors Place.

It's a problem because the Canucks hiked ticket prices, expecting his return. An upper bowl seat, regularly $32, is $45.75. Club seats, normally $179.25, were raised $40 to $219.25. Ticketmaster service charges and the facility surcharge are another $8.50 per ticket. It's one of four games under the Canucks' premium-plus pricing scheme.

Canucks' fan Matt Kaiser, who spent more than $2,500 on a pair of half-season subscriptions, bought tickets for Bertuzzi's return.

"I don't see that the Canucks are going to do anything to appease the fans," Kaiser lamented.

"They can't control it. At the same time, they have to understand it's not a premium-plus game."

Panthers are the second-worst team in the Eastern conference.

Kaiser said he put a lot of money into Canucks' coffers and is having second thoughts about renewing next season to watch what has become "a very boring product."

Bertuzzi was convicted for his 2004 assault that badly injured Colorado Avalanche rookie Steve Moore. Moore hasn't resumed his career and is suing Bertuzzi and the Canucks.

The Canucks dealt Bertuzzi to Florida in July with defenceman Bryan Allen and goalie Alexander Auld for goaltender Roberto Luongo, defenseman Lukas Krajicek and a draft pick.


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