There are those who play in NY and those who play for NY. In the NY sports market there are the types who follow the money and not their hearts and crumble under the big lights. But then there are those that blend into the bright lights and become one with the city. From baseball to hockey we have seen players come here only to crash and burn . There was Theo Fleury who never wanted to play in NY. The Calgary kid followed the money train into Penn Station and he and the endless amount of big money takers took a bite out of the Apple.Then there is Alex Rodriguez ( Yes I'm a Yankees Fan) who exploited his favorite baseball team ( The Mets) and balked at signing with the club only to land in TX with the other Rangers. Here is a player who had the chance to sign with his favorite team ,but the team was in NY. Alex could have saw the lights from the Brooklyn Bridge and known that he just wasn't cut out for the Apple Pie.Sad to say the player caves into what the media wants and the fans dream of,but knows it may not be for them.After his trade to the Yanks he had won scoring titles and been in the paper,but the overall team success in the playoffs has evaporated. NY is a magnifying lenses and in the playoffs the sun beats down on you even more. If you don't produce you will burn up . You can't fault players for taking money or seeing if they can hack in in NY. Cause like Sinatra says if you can make it here then well you can make it anywhere. Some players are just as big as the city and know before they get here that they can play here or more important identify with us.
Mark Messier pressed Sather to move him to NY and not only embraced the city but became one of its own. A kid from Edmonton became larger than baseball,larger than basketball, and larger than the Rangers themselves..He became the Messiah. Sean Avery was on a satellite Radio show a few years ago when he was still with the Kings. He was asked if he could play in NY and he said that if he ever made it here he would turn the building upside down. A few months later his premonition came true and so did his gut feelings, as his name was chanted from the blue seats. You can make it but you can't fake it,and New Yorkers know that. Brett Favre was traded to the JETS the other day and despite being a Giants fan,it will be interesting to watch. But Brett's gut was to stay out of the area and play in a smaller market like Minnesota or Tampa. There have been laundry lists of player who come here to die and I hope that's not the case. But this brings me back again to the player who called NY to be here. The Player who said his favorite building was MSG. The leader who said his favorite city to play in was none other than NY. Mats Sundin, those who have listened to the city calling...usually answered in return.