Wednesday, July 22, 2009

A Game of Telephone

No that is not a picture of Chris Chelios as a rookie that you are seeing on the left side. It is kind of close though.

When I was a kid to teach us about the evils of gossip; the teachers used to make us play this game called "Telephone." It was rather simple as one person would whisper something into someone's ear they would whisper it into the next person and so on and so on until it reached the last person in line.

90% of the time the original statement never would make it to the end of the line and what did make typically was not even close to the very first statement. I bring it up because a rumor that made the rounds on Wednesday reminded me of that game.

It started when Stan Fischler posted a report that Chris Chelios wanted to play for the Rangers but the versions I was hearing via Twitter and elsewhere were nothing like what Fischler wrote. In a nutshell, the various versions had Sather signing 47 year old Chelios to be a mentor for the young Ranger defense.

Only thing is that in this case Glen Sather and the Rangers had nothing at all to do with signing the worlds oldest NHL player. If anything it would have been fun to hear what either Sather or Tortorella were saying when they were getting blamed for something they did not do.

In the Fischler's original version found here, Fischler took what Chelios pal Jeremy Roenick told Dan Bickley of the Arizona Republic and turned it into a blog entry.

In that interview, Roenick said this:

"Chelly wants to play until he's fifty," Roenick told Bickley. "Chelly wants to play in New York for the Rangers and Glen Sather."

It was not Chris Chelios who said this, it was not Glen Sather, it was not even John Tortorella but rather Jeremy Roenick who at times rivals Mike Milbury and Pierre McGuire in the "I can say more dumb things than you can" department. Want to see this story turn into a non-story now that you see who really started it?

What is wrong on the part of Fischler here is that he could have made the effort to contact Chelios himself and gotten the straight skinny directly from the source. Fischler here never really says directly whether he wants to see Chelios in a Ranger uniform himself.

Instead he takes 2 sentences and those sentences created a bit of an uproar in the Ranger web universe. Give the Maven some credit as he got people talking about Stan Fischler when there was nothing Ranger to talk about.

Old Fischler got those of us who read the various versions (including myself) to read and react to it. We wasted the time and energy addressing it and odds are if most of has known the original source then the majority of us would have dismissed it.

Still there is a lesson to be learned here if the Rangers are paying attention, that the mere talk about signing a 47 year old veteran was enough to anger many a Ranger fan. It is a sign that Ranger fans have little faith in Glen Sather's ability to make the right moves.

Ranger fans for the most part fear the worst out of Sather and signing Chris Chelios would be a poor move.

Sorry no matter how you try to explain away this kind of move it just does not work for the Rangers. Chelios at 47 is not worth carrying even in a part time role because he is not going to be able to play the Tortorella system.

But we still played "Telephone" and Stan Fischler got use to talk about him and for many get them to check out his blog entry. That is his job and he did it well.

One of these days though Ranger fans will hang up the "phone" on Fischler.

(picture courtesy of

1 comment:

cwgatti said...

Great read. But wouldn't you admit that the Ranger youth/farm is BETTER now than it was last season? I, like you, am concerned about Dubi's status. Why isn't he signed. I KNOW Torts is hot for Richards, but you bring up a good point:
Sign Dubi anyway. He is affordable.
Great blog.