Monday, August 25, 2008

A tough week for Legein

"I'd like for everyone to stop bashing my father, my family, and me personally. My family has been amazing. They have supported me and never forced me to do anything and to say its their fault is ridiculous.

"Take the time to talk to me before you accuse me of being addicted to anything, even if it's coffee. I realize you're going to speculate but please don't bash my character and especially my family."
Stefan Legein's biggest mistake was probably allowing all this to come out in late August, when there's diddly on the hockey docket and pundits are back from the beach.

How's this for a scenario: A second-round pick with an outside shot at a productive NHL career calls it quits in early October after training camp, choosing to return to home rather than make a go of it as a professional.

It'd be a small brief, a footnote for anyone outside of Columbus as the season got going in the Czech Republic and Sweden and the drama of the 4-S club was settled.

Such as it is, with this in the news, one thing that we haven't seen discussed is the fact that Legein signed a three-year, entry level deal back in November, and that there was a signing bonus attached to the contract.

Has any of that been paid out? And, if so, have the Blue Jackets gotten it back?

Even if Legein was a long shot to make it, there was likely about $250,000 in guaranteed money there for showing up, which is a lot to walk away from.

It actually makes me wonder how many players stay in the game for the wrong reasons these days.

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At 9:35 a.m., August 25, 2008, Blogger Ben said...

You are totally right about the timing - this should have been a footnote in most sports sections.

But let's cut the guy some slack. It's his life and he doesn't have to justify anything to hockey fans at this point in his career.

At 1:10 p.m., August 25, 2008, Anonymous Mulligan said...

Good for the young kid.

Who knows, maybe he'll become a doctor and make $500k+/year for life like Fred Arthur (was a first round pick in 1980 who walked away from the game to attend medical school).

Those people who criticize him and his family are just jealous.

At 2:07 p.m., August 25, 2008, Blogger DMG said...

I agree with Mulligan: envy plays a huge role. It's because you have a ton of guys out there who love hockey and would do (or at least claim they'd do) just about anything for a shot at the NHL and they can't imagine someone walking away from that chance. But the reality is that while that is the dream for many people (myself included) it just isn't for everyone, not even all those who are blessed with that kind of talent.

At 2:50 p.m., August 25, 2008, Anonymous Anshu said...

It actually makes me wonder how many players stay in the game for the wrong reasons these days.

I think this is true of just about every profession. There are lots of things I'd rather do than come in to work every morning. The only problem is that if I do all those other things, I can't pay the bills.

I'm not saying I dislike my job. But if I won the lottery, I'd quit in a heartbeat.

Alternatively, if someone offered me a job that I really didn't particularly enjoy, but I just had to tough it out for 5 years and I'd make enough money that I could quit and retire comfortably, I'd seriously consider that.

At 5:26 p.m., August 25, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

He's just a kid. He can go to university, play some lower-level hockey, take some boring classes, and sometime in the spring semester of 2010 it'll dawn on him that no matter what crappy profession he's aiming for he'll never make in 40 years what he could make in a handful playing NHL hockey. And that ALL jobs suck.

So he'll get an agent to arrange a camp invite somewhere and he'll give it a shot.

Then we can fall all over ourselves writing about what a courageous story of perseverance it is.

At 5:37 p.m., August 25, 2008, Blogger therealdeal said...

I think the reason this was a big story isn't just the timing, it's the fact that Canadian hockey fans got to see some of Legein's personality during the Super Series and especially the Juniors. He wasn't just another anonymous prospect.

At 6:40 p.m., August 25, 2008, Blogger Doogie2K said...

I dunno, I see what you're saying about the timing, Mirtle, but my own personal guess is that he just couldn't take it anymore, and had to pull the chute now.

At 7:32 p.m., August 25, 2008, Blogger Kara said...

therealdeal: bingo. we have seen some of his linemates during the Juniors reach the NHL this past season. I think it's fair to say we could have seen more, including him, at some point to reach the big stage.

the kid is doing what he has to do. for whatever reasons and there's no problem in that.


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