Friday, June 13, 2008

The Fantasy.

This happens every year. Seriously every year, every sport, every city. Some team that's been down the crap hole in every last possible way signs some big name free agent or trades for one or whatever. Anyway they end up with this giant star on their roster of malcontents, underachievers, and life long losers. And the minute. I mean the very exact second that they ink the giant contract, "IT" starts.
Every fan of that team starts to whisper. "Player X is here to fix the whole shebang." The "Messiah" has been signed. He's going to fix everything, he's going to drive invalid elderly war vets to the arena to fill the seats. He's going to have a little star-to-grinder talk with that guy that's always effing up everything and turn him around. He can fly, he can shoot goals out of his eyes, he can use mental telepathy from the bench to save goals, he'll get all of his international friends and former team mates to come here, he'll save the orphanage, he can literally crap out a win, and sneeze a puck into the crease. And most importantly he can win a championship surrounded by the rest of the under skilled team that the GM signed.
But then the season starts. Then new whispering starts. "He's a waste of money." He can't do anything right, he punched a quadriplegic orphan in the crotch, he's a jerk, he's a loser. Why did we sign him?
Then after 2 or 3 or 4 years of slugging it out in an under developed team and decides he can't take it anymore. He leaves town and everyone hates his guts. Despite the fact he got hung out to dry and never got any real help on the wing, it's all his fault. He's Public Enemy #1. And then to make things worse he signs on with a good team and "re-finds" his touch and has a comeback. Which makes the whining even worse. He threw games, he mailed it in, he did that to us on purpose!
I find this all ridiculous.
There is no single player that can fix every problem on a franchise. Cases in point: Gretzky in LA, Gretzky in STL, Gretzky in NYR, Marcel Dionne in LA, Marcel Dionne in NYR, Guy Lafleur in NYR, Phil Esposito in NYR, Nikolai Khabibulin and Martin Havlat in CHI, Paul Kariya in STL, Peter Forsberg in Nashville, Peter Forsberg in Philly, etc. etc. etc. And there is only so much a player can take no matter how good he is or how much of a man he is.
I guess all I'm saying is this, "If your team wins the Ollie Jokinen fire sale Lottery, but doesn't have any other talent on the team; don't go nuts talking STANLEY CUP CHAMPIONS!". And when he doesn't bring it to you, don't smash his face in with your bitter words.
I think that is a fair request. Anyone else?

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