I am not sure what this post has to do with the Dallas Stars, other than a scenario that popped in my head as I watched the Brett Favre return to Lambeau Field on Sunday. What if Mike Modano played against the Stars?
First, some disclosure: I am a huge Green Bay Packers fan (I have a tattoo of the G, and son named Brett). I have loved that team since I was born, and I plan on loving them until I leave this world.
But, they (The Packers' loyal fans) stood for something on Sunday that made me ill. The people in that stadium - not all, but a vocal majority - booed the man they adored for 16 wonderful seasons. It really made me sad. I thought of how he left, which was basically the team telling him he no longer had his job, and how I assume all he ever wanted from his bosses there was to let him stay forever. Not realistic, but surely there is a happy medium for a player between being told when to leave and staying forever.
But, the fans don't know what happened. They know what they have been told. They have been told that since he is a Minnesota Viking now, you should disrespect everything he did for you for 16 years and boo him. He plays for the enemy, right? He is a traitor, right?
I have booed the hated Vikings my entire life. I hope they lose every game. But, just because Favre wants to keep playing and the Vikings offered him a chance doesn't mean that he wouldn't rather play for the Packers. But they told him, "no".
So, we should boo him for not retiring? You want him to retire instead of playing for another Super Bowl?
A few problems with that logic.
A) - He didn't want to leave in the first place. The Packers wanted the shiny, new QB who they have groomed to replace Brett. They chose, and they got their guy. Despite Favre taking them to a 13-3 record, they decided that it was over.
B) - He didn't leave for more money. This isn't like A-Rod when he returned to Seattle and they were throwing money at him. Whether it is his right or not, if a player leaves to get more money elsewhere, I can see the fans feeling like he never loved us - just our money.
|Brett Favre celebrates the Vikings' win over Green Bay. |
Photograph: Mike Roemer/AP
C) - He isn't mad at you, the fan. He is mad at the guy (Ted Thompson) who runs your franchise who decided Brett couldn't play. He wants to prove to him that he made a mistake. Who among us wouldn't also want to prove that we aren't garbage that should be taken to the curb.
But there are the fans. Booing him. What disrespect. I don't blame the younger kids in the crowd. But, the adults? Who like me saw how horrid that franchise was before he helped restore the pride in a franchise that had been listless for 25 years? How could they? He is owed a debt of gratitude for everything he did, and he is clearly the greatest Green Bay Packer of our lifetime. Yet, you turn your back on him because he still wants to play football?
What if that ever happened here? What if the Stars said Mike Modano cannot play anymore and they don't offer him a contract or they trade him away. And what if he wants to keep playing and Detroit or San Jose give him a job because they think he can still play.
Would you forget 2 decades of blood, sweat, and tears? Would you boo him? Would you turn your back on a guy who bent over backwards for you at every turn? Would you forget the guy who helped put hockey in Dallas and make this a healthy and successful franchise? Would you support your franchise even if they are clearly wrong?
Believe me, you don't want to ever find out. But, Sunday made me think hard about that scenario, and I wish I could have avoided it. Right now, I am disgusted to associate with that angry mob on Sunday.
Email him your thoughts on Brett Favre and Mike Modano to Sturm1310@aol.com and follow him on twitter at www.twitter.com/bobanddan
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Author: Bob Sturm