Blog Entry

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts

Posted on: January 25, 2012 10:41 am
Edited on: January 25, 2012 3:30 pm
 
Thomas had a chance to be heard and he took it. (Getty Images)

By Brian Stubits

The biggest non-news story of the hockey season -- the defending champions visiting the White House and meeting the President of the United States -- is mushrooming into one of the bigger stories this season. Sadly, that might not be hyperbole based on the latest reports out of Boston.

By now you surely know about Tim Thomas' decision to not join his teammates on their trip to the White House. He instead chose to skip it as a protest to what he later revealed in his Facebook statement is the ever-expanding reach of the federal government. It ignited a wildfire that's leading people to thinking some awfully irrational things.

First, here is what is being said from within the Bruins organization, outside of their public statements. From Fluto Shinzawa at the Boston Globe:

It was Timmy being Timmy.

“[Expletive] selfish [expletive]," one team source said.

But that's not the view from everybody. Milan Lucic was on the record saying it didn't bother him and Shinzawa reported two team sources didn't believe Thomas' decision would have any negative effects in the locker room, it's par for Timmy's course.

Sounds pretty similar to another player in Boston sports (Manny Ramirez, anyone?) In the case of Ramirez, the Red Sox put up with his antics for some time before he was eventually pushed out of town.

Could that actually be a possibility for Thomas? After all, as Shinzawa writes (and makes clear with Timmy being Timmy) he is a bit of a lone wolf. He's a goaltender, and you know it's OK to categorize every goalie out there as a wackjob.

The answer is maybe, according to Shinzawa.

Thomas’s decision, however, may be the first step in goalie and team parting ways. His no-movement clause expires at the conclusion of this season. Thomas has one more season remaining on his four-year, $20 million contract. Rask, a restricted free agent at year’s end, should be ready to assume the starting job in 2012-13.

Now you know this story is getting out of hand. Look, I'd understand trading Thomas from a hockey perspective. I think it would be a mistake and would be stupid, but I understand it. He's up there in age at 37, his value is still incredibly high and Tuukka Rask has proven to be more than capable. The hockey aspect makes sense ... except when you remember that Thomas is arguably still the best in the world and can lead the Bruins to back-to-back Stanley Cups this season. Don't forget that little aspect of the equation.

I haven't understood this whole soap opera at any point. I've seen people complaining that Thomas decided to politicize an event that wasn't about politics. The way I see it, this was the most political thing any of the Bruins players have done in their careers. It's certainly more political than all the time they spend playing games, practicing or traveling. Should he instead have had a grandstanding session after a November shutout in the locker room? He was presented with a chance to make a political statement and he took it.

Further, I'd argue that this didn't take away from the Bruins' day at the White House at all. What this Thomas story did is actually make people remember that the Bruins visited the White House period. It's an event that is a photo op where the honoring from the president lasts literally less than 10 minutes. A lot of people have no idea that the St. Louis Cardinals just had the same honor a week ago. It was hardly news.

But now? Oh, everybody knows the Bruins visited the White House as the reigning champions. This whole saga has only shined a brighter light on the visit.

There are others that don't care what Thomas has to say about politics, he's just a hockey player. I see that all the time and it irritates me to no end. So because somebody is an athlete they can't have their own ideologies? The difference between Thomas and that neighbor of yours who litters his yard with political signs is that Thomas has a bigger platform. He wanted to get a message across and he did it.

I don't know who the source was that so eloquently called Thomas selfish, obviously. But I'd bet that even that person wouldn't want Thomas off the team. I was in the locker room with the Bruins last night, we in the media saw Thomas walking around munching on a postgame snack and going into the changing area with the other players. He didn't appear to be in any kind of awkward state of avoidance.

I can't see how this becomes a seriously divisive issue as some make it out to be. Are the other guys going to be so upset that they stop playing in front of Thomas and hinder their own goal of repeating as champs? Or might it be a distraction with the team and Thomas being asked about it?

Doubtful. Thomas is a strong-willed person, that's evident. He said in his Facebook statement that this was the only thing he was going to say on the whole fiasco. That's it. When he is eventually asked by the media, you already know he is going to defiantly say he's not talking about it. That will be that.

So Thomas has a bit of a selfish side and this let it be seen to the rest of the world. So what? Chalk it up to goalies being goalies (or Timmy being Timmy, in this case) and move on, I have little doubt the players will.

In the meantime, I'm left wondering how many write-in votes Thomas will get in this year's presidential election because you just know he'll get some.

More from Eye on Hockey

B's hit break on slump by their standards
Thomas explains decision to skip White House
Bruins honored in visit to White House

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Comments

Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: January 26, 2012 12:39 am
 

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts


oh, for goodness sake, he doesn't like obama.....well, most people don't, why is this a controversy? going to the white house might be pretty cool to most, but not all, and it shouldn't be required of anyone who's invited. judas priest, why would anyone care wether or not he went to meet the president? the president is an EMPLOYEE of the country, and that is what has been forgotten. good for him...he should ask barry to come to boston and pay his respects.



Since: Feb 3, 2009
Posted on: January 26, 2012 12:27 am
 

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts

Keep deluding yourself. Canadians come here to go to school(university level) and also live in a climate which is warm. You can count the Americans who move to Canada on one hand. Most went to avoid the law because they knew they could get away with it.

Canada has some very nice cities(Toronto and Vancouver to name 2) and great beer. They also get a lot of love for inventing the great sport of hockey. I'll even give them credit for some awesome contributors to comedy in: Jim Carrey, Harold Ramis, Eugene Levy,Rick Moranis, Dave Thomas, Joe Flaherty, Andrea Martin and the great Catherine O'Hara. I'll even give you Seth Rogan. However,Ryan Reynolds is horrible.

However, we all know the lower 48 is the destination for those who want to truly make a name for themselves. That's why so many have been transplanted in California, Florida and elsewhere.
wow, you go and make a very educated and well thought out post about the founding father's, and then follow it up with this slice of verbal diarrhea, which is pretty much the complete opposite, meaning uneducated, uninformed, and just generally stupid.

school - well canadians go there becuase americans pay for our education so long as we play hockey, football, baseball, etc.  sweet, thanks for footing the bill, not really sure what that proves.

weather - really???  you know that probably 60-65% of your population lives in a climate pretty much identical to Canada's climate, within a couple of degrees on average.

this is a very very sad post, by a very uneducated person, who clearly knows NOTHING about Canada, and probably not much about your own country either, other than the stuff you wrote in your previous post (i'm gonna assume you majored in american history in school)



Since: Aug 14, 2011
Posted on: January 26, 2012 12:26 am
 

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts

James Harrison refused to go a few years ago when the Steelers won the Super Bowl. I think both players should have went because it's a honor. It's not like they were going there to discuss politics. They were there to be congratulated on a great achievement and Thomas was a main reason why the B's won it all so he should have went. He didn't have to like it but why must you disrespect the president? I'm not an Obama fan but I wouldn't let that get in the way of meeting him and having a cool memory to relive later in life. They won the Cup as a team and should have went as a team instead of Thomas acting like he is above it all. Harrison has never been in his right mind but I wouldn't expect this out of Thomas. If Thomas wants to whine about the government then run for office and do something about it instead of boycotting a celebration honoring the Stanley Cup champs. Hey I'm sure Obama could care less about you as well Thomas.



Since: Jun 19, 2011
Posted on: January 26, 2012 12:09 am
 

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts

Hmmm I think some of you need to go back and re-take US Social Science 101 maybe this time you might understand the US Consitution and Bill of Rights.

In this day and age of instance sound bites and photo ops Mr. Thomas decide to excersize his 1st Adm Right to Speech while some of you may not like it and I'm guessing many of you have no idea what he is talking about he has this right as an American. Personally if I was in the same possition I wouldn't have gone for two reason the 1st being I refuse to have Secret Service do a background Check on me so I can visit the White House, this is somethin while not discuss is a major issue in order for you to visit the White House you must sumit to a background chek. As an American's we shouldn't plain and simple it's a clear violation of the 4th Adm. 2nd reason is I don't like Obama and would never stand in the same room with him in my eye his is a traitor who has violated the Consitution so many times it's not even funny anymore.

So yes it was great that Mr. Thomas decide to take a stand you know what it's has got allot of folks talking about the isuue's that he brought up and as someone who work's on The Hill I can tell you allot of Obama Democrat's are a tad upset over this and the light it has been shown on how they have double the size of the Government in the 3 and half years that Obama has been the President.




Since: Aug 25, 2009
Posted on: January 25, 2012 10:56 pm
 

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts

 So, sometime down the road, Thomas might be applying for a job.  The person making the decision will probably google him.  If I wanted someone with entreprenurial abilities, I might take him.  But if I wanted someone who I could trust to respect authority within the company, I would throw his app in the trash can.
 
He will not likely be coming to you appluying for a job any time soon.  He makes several million per year and will likely just retire when his career is over, which won't happen for a while, considering he is one the very best in teh game.



Since: Nov 1, 2009
Posted on: January 25, 2012 10:15 pm
 

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts

If our Congress is a true reflection of the people, not real difficult to understand why they can't work together and get anything done, after reading all these posts. No one is going to budge on their opinion and the more each side is attacked, the more entrenched they become. Both sides believing that the others are either blind or idiotic, while the truth is so obvious to them. All depends where you get your news from, and more importantly, what the source's views are.

If you're on the Right and someone criticized Bush while in office, you were unpatriotic, a traitor, or an elitist. If you were on the Left, it was painfully obvious how much of a buffoon Bush was and the Right were sheep being led to the slaughter. Now with Obama, it's the reverse, with the right applauding anyone who criticizes him as courageous and heroic, and the Left are now the sheep. And round and round it goes, with no end in sight.

I'll say this about Thomas; while I don't agree with his views, he was very smart or given good guidance not to specifically mention Obama. I don't think it's a big leap to say he's not a fan of Obama, since he said he's a fan of Glenn Beck, but I won't put words in his mouth or speculate. What I will applaud is that at least he stepped out of the athletic bubble and made a stand, misguided or not. Too many athletes say the same cliches and won't discuss anything that would be considered controversial.

It was a decision he was free to make, just as we are free to applaud or criticize it.




Since: Sep 8, 2006
Posted on: January 25, 2012 10:14 pm
 

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts

It`ll blow over because most of the Bruins are Canadians anyway, so won`t take it personally. But for Thomas to imply he is not being political and taking a stand against any one party is silly. If he really objected to the system more than the man then he`d have gone just to have the opportunity for a little one on one with Obama to express his dissent. That is democracy, not demonizing the enemy and plugging your ears when they talk.
Personally, I liked the rags to riches story of Thomas until now, now he`s just another brainwashed flake who doesn`t have the strength of conviction to suck it up and make a show for his teammates. That makes him a liability despite his play and I`d trade him next year and give Rask the job.



Since: Dec 5, 2008
Posted on: January 25, 2012 10:14 pm
 

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts

Who really cares that tim thomas didnt go to the white house.....no one here cares.  Hockey fans dont care.   Seriously, no one cares.   This is just another excuse for conservitives to say that obama shouldnt be president.   Maybe if you wouldnt have taken those bad home loans or bought TVs and cars you didn't need....so now we blame the president because you have credit card debt.   Thomas makes 5 mil a year....you really think he cares about the state of the country's economy...where was his lobbying a month ago?  He's another selfish opportunist who felt the need to take away from his teams accomplishment by staying home to watch TV.   He can no longer stop goals....so he stops his teams recognition and brings the focus on him.   Typical.



Since: Jan 25, 2012
Posted on: January 25, 2012 10:11 pm
 

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts

you'll neber be Tim Thomas' boss LOLOLOLOLOLOL



Since: Dec 5, 2008
Posted on: January 25, 2012 10:11 pm
 

Report: Thomas called selfish; Speculation starts

Who really cares that tim thomas didnt go to the white house.....no one here cares.  Hockey fans dont care.   Seriously, no one cares.   This is jus another excuse for conservitives to say that obama should be president.   Maybe if you would have taken those bad home loans or bought TVs and cars you didn't need....so now we blame the president because you have credit card debt.   Thomas makes 5 mil a year....you really think he cares about the state of the country....where was his lobbying a month ago?  He's another selfish opportunist who felt the need to take away from his teams accomplishment by staying home to watch TV.   He can no longer stop goals....so he stops his teams recognition and brings the focus on him.   Typical.  


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