Okay, here’s the deal. I know the Lightning are banking on this kid being better than sliced bread. If he is, fantastic. But there’s such a thing as overkill in the hype. Last week I received a care package from the Lightning. What was in it?
A wristband with “SEEN STAMKOS?” on it. Along with a bumper sticker that said the same. And, of course, they also included an application for season tickets. This guy seems like a decent enough hockey player. To be brutally honest, I couldn’t pinpoint Sarnia, where he plays, on a map if you gave me coordinates and a compass. The kid’s choice in haircut leaves a couple major questions about his decision-making ability, but I’m not one to talk.
Still, Tampa has gone above and beyond simply promoting this guy. The wristband, the bracelet, the t-shirts, the website, and at last count, there are about a dozen “SEEN STAMKOS?” billboards around Tampa. When I went to the track for the Kentucky Derby, there were two of them within about 300 yards of each other. When was the last time a team in any sport hyped their number one pick so hard…before they even drafted him?
He certainly looks like the real deal, and if he can fill the hole left by Brad Richards when he left town, more power to him. Good luck, kiddo.
Now, about picking a goalie in the second round….