Sunday, February 15, 2009

Sunday morning homily XXII

In an ideal world, every player -- from Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby to Washington's Alex Ovechkin to even Tampa Bay's Marek Malik -- would not only honor every request for an autograph, but they'd also ask if there's anything else they could sign for you.

We all know, though, that isn't the case. Especially with the game's top stars. As much as I would like to have top-shelf players fill The Vault with each and every item I'd ever want signed, it's unrealistic to expect even the sloppiest of scribbles.

It doesn't matter if you're a hound or a dealer, no one likes hearing "No" to their request for an autograph. But, it does happen. Quite a bit, too.

That doesn't mean, though, that the player or a team member should be continually badgered to the point of having to contact hotel security. It makes no difference to a player if you share the same birthday. Or if you bought that player's jersey to celebrate the occasion. As hard as it is to hear, no means no.

To push back to a point that one's actions, brought about by selfish desires, ruin it for others is not a very smart strategy.

Yes, it stinks hearing "No." But when you do, and, trust me, this comes from experience, it's always best to walk away. A hard lesson? Perhaps. But it's one that needs to be learned.

Shooting blanks

I couldn't help but get a chuckle out of Toronto's Brad May and his refusal Thursday to sign blank 8x10 pieces of photo paper.

"I don't want my autograph appearing on a picture of boobs," said May, who had no problems signing a puck for me. "You just don't know how it's going to be used. That's why I don't sign those."

Given his refusal, as well as Atlanta's Eric Perrin wanting to know what the pieces of paper were for, I won't be surprised to see more players passing on requests.

Something tells me, too, that I'm not done writing about this. I'm curious as to what the NHL and the players association think about this. As a journalist, and not just a blogger, I'm obligated to find out.

5 Big Sigs

It'll be a pretty busy week down here in Hockey Bay with the Chicago Blackhawks and New Jersey Devils coming to town. Here's what we're hoping to add:

~ Chicago's Patrick Kane on Blackhawks and London Knights pucks;
~ Chicago's Jonathan Toews on Blackhawks and University of North Dakota pucks;
~ Chicago's Nikolai Khabibulin on Lightning Stanley Cup items (didn't make the trip);
~ New Jersey's Martin Brodeur on his replica jersey; and
~ New Jersey's Zach Parise on a University of North Dakota puck.


Drew said...

Supposedly the NHLPA and players agents are telling players not to sign any sort of blank sheets of paper, index cards, or whatever because they can be used to create counterfeit merchandise or even worse, commit identity theft.

Puckhound said...

I don't believe anything like that's going on down here. Or, at least, I hope not.

Be a good story, though, if it is.