A surprise appearance by Pavel Bure at Rogers Arena cranked up the debate once again about whether his jersey number will finally be honoured.

If you’re into reading between the lines, it looks good.

Asked about the possibility of hanging his No. 10 from the arena rafters, Bure confirmed that Vancouver Canucks owner Francesco Aquilini discussed the possibility when he flew to Toronto to dine with him before his induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame last fall.

The topic of that dinner was first detailed by The Province back in November.

“Francesco showed me great respect when he came to see me,” Bure said.

On whether this is all leading toward the Canucks’ lone hall-of-famer getting equal status to the three guys who have had their jerseys retired before him, Bure said:

“We’ve had some discussions with Francesco. We talked about potential plans. We have some ideas. But I’m going to leave it to Francesco to share those details with you guys.

“All of the details, Francesco Aquilini will probably share with you. But, obviously, it’s a huge honour.

“In general, it’s a huge honour, that’s what I can tell you.”

Bure said Aquilini wanted him in Vancouver this week, during which time he will work with charities, including the Canucks for Kids Fund Telethon at tonight’s game.

Stan Smyl, the Canucks legend and current senior advisor, said it’s time for Bure to be honoured by the team.

“Somehow, some way,” Smyl said. “I know there’s been a lot of talk about it and a lot of debate about it.