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October 18, 2000
The average bear.
And here's another stupid little niggly thing

Thornton with 2 n'sI have a friend from Buffalo who has an old Sabre hockey sweater with the number 77 and Turgeon on the back. Does anyone remember that Pierre Turgeon was once Buffalo's franchise player? Thought not.

Because of the business of hockey -- free agency, rich and poor owners -- it's hard for a fan to decide which customized $150 hockey sweater to buy. Ask Leaf fans sporting Gilmour #93 and Potvin #29. And we won't even try to guess how many Oiler Gretzky #99's there are. Okay, you deal with it. But listen to my lame hockey sweater story:

I am a Montreal Canadiens fan. With that comes a deep loathing for the Boston Bruins. Well some people near and dear to me thought it would be cute/funny/cool/ironic if they got me a Bruins sweater with Joe Thornton's #6 on it. I'm always complaining how people spell Thornton without the middle 'N' so this would be a way to advertise the correct spelling too. Ha ha very funny. But it turned out to be a rather nice gift, a beautiful hockey sweater so I even wore it!

Now Joe is the Bruins' franchise player so there's always a chance he'll stick around (in spite of Harry Sinden's purse strings) so my shirt will have lasting power right? WRONG! This year, Joe decides to go and trade in his kind of sucky #6 to the cool #19! And who wouldn't? I mean what cool player wears #6? Phil Housley? He's a one-way defenceman? And historically #6 was worn by... ummm, well let's see, there's Ted Green, ummm... Ron Ellis... hmmm. But #19... well here you've got Steve Yzerman, Joe Sakic, Jean Ratelle, Larry Robinson and Paul Henderson for goodness sake! That's cool! So I'm stuck with a sweater of a team I hate with a lame number on it... and it's not even numerically correct anymore - the guy didn't even get traded! And that totally sucks ass!

And if you're just dying to know why Joe pulled the switch, this is from the Boston Bruins website:

"Many of you have written in to ask Joe Thornton about why he changed his number from 6 to 19.

Joe answers:
My favorite player growing up was Wayne Gretzky, but I wasn't going to wear #99 while playing hockey. My brother John's favorite player was Steve Yzerman, so I took #19 and wore it all through minor hockey and in juniors at Sault Ste. Marie. When I was drafted by the Bruins, Rob DiMaio already had #19 so I wore #6. When Robbie got traded at the end of last year and his number became available over the summer, I went back to the #19 I'd always worn."

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