Saturday, 23 June 2012

Kid, you've been drafted by the Islanders. Now smile.

One thing I’m wondering about, but am too lazy to actually research, is what a draftee says to the local press after being drafted by the New York Islanders or the Columbus Blue Jackets. In Montréal, we keep hearing the same things, how excited they are to be part of such a prestigious organization. We know these kids are trained to deal with the media and their responses are rehearsed, but what about if they’re Long Island bound? What’s the script then?
With the Canadiens or the Leafs, you have an easy job talking about the history and rabid fan base. The Wings and Devils you mention the strong organization, the Rangers you talk about the Big Apple and Mark Messier, the Kings is easy with the beaches and Hollywood and a Stanley Cup to boot. Southern cities have climate and young fan bases to conquer, Nashville has a special character you can refer to, and the unspoken aspiration to also bed Carrie Underwood eventually, which confers a genuine smile to the starry-eyed prospect. In like fashion, the western Canadian teams have unpluggable gushers of puck bunnies, which you can refer to as the ‘awesome fans’.
So what about the Islanders?
“I really excite about grrreat trrradishin of Mike Bossy a decade before I vaz borned.”
“I’m really stoked about the facilities. The Canadiens’ already have a decade of use or more, the Islanders' will be brand spanking new when they get around to starting construction, in five or ten years or so, and we can then move out of the rusting shit pile that is Nassau Coliseum!” (High-fives Larry Brooks)
“Onstage I got to to shake hands with eccentric nutjob owner Charles Wang. I can’t wait to meet lifelong Islanders like Alexei Yashin and Rick DiPietro. Maybe some day I can be a goodwill ambassador like Pat Lafontaine for a few months before I get kicked out the back door too.”

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