EDITORIAL: Vipers deserve to host RBC

It’s a perfect time to think hockey in June.

It’s a perfect time to think hockey in June.

Of course, the Vancouver Canucks have a chance to make history tonight by winning their first-ever Stanley Cup, on home ice, in game seven, against the Boston Bruins.

At the same time the province is running rampant with hockey fever comes word that the six-time national Junior A hockey champion Vernon Vipers will bid on the tournament they have dominated the last three years, the Royal Bank Cup, in 2014.

The Vipers have been in the RBC final the last three years, winning twice and losing this year’s title game, 2-0, in Camrose, Alta. to Ontario’s Pembroke Lumber Kings, who scored the winning goal late in the third period. Pembroke denied Vernon a chance to become the first team to ever win three straight Canadian titles.

The City of Vernon has endorsed the Vipers’ bid to host the national championship.

Really, this is a no-brainer from all aspects.

Vernon teams have appeared in this tournament nine times, winning it all six times. That includes when the tournament was known as the Centennial Cup, and Vernon was the first city to host a five-team tournament in 1990. That event ended with an all-B.C. final as the then-Lakers beat the BCHL champion New Westminster Royals in overtime at the aging Vernon Civic Arena in front of an overflow crowd.

The crowds would be bigger and more comfortable in 2014 in the friendly confines of the Wesbild Centre. The volunteers would be plenty. And the event would be an obvious economic boost to the North Okanagan.

No city deserves to host this event more.

—Vernon Morning Star