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NYTimes: Toronto vs. Dallas: For Gustavsson, Never a Hard Choice

This is an article that if it were written swapping Toronto and Dallas we would have an absolute field day on. I'm not sure it's a fair assessment of the situation as it developed but here are some choice quotes:

Yet in today’s Dallas Morning News there is an article headlined "Swedish Goalie’s Snub Stings Dallas Stars." In it, the Morning News’s Mike Heika tells of anger and disappointment among Dallas hockey fans, and blame pointed at new G.M. Joe Nieuwendyk. "The shine was off the apple for many Stars fans," Heika writes, "who littered message boards with doubts about where Nieuwendyk is steering this ship."

Fans are fans. Writing about what "fans" think is a laughable abstraction that Damien Cox and his ilk use to make team's fanbases look stupid. (This is aimed at the Dallas Morning News.) One guy who thinks Nieuwendyk is bad at signing free agents, completely ignoring his work with Bozak and Hanson, doesn't speak for everyone else who knows you can't sign everyone. Brian Burke, meet Matt Gilroy.

Such a reaction is nothing short of astonishing. Even if they were not aware of the admiring comments Gustavsson had made about Toronto and the Leafs in the weeks leading up to his decision, how much chance did Stars fans think there really was for a Swedish player of Gustavsson’s caliber to choose Dallas over Toronto?

I love what Burke's done with the Leafs this summer. That said Dallas isn't a bad hockey club. They've had a lot of success, they're in a good hockey market that they've worked hard to cultivate - Dallas isn't a backwater hellhole devoid of hockey. People in Texas have embraced hockey in a big way. I refuse to believe that guys like Brad Richards don't get recognized in Dallas. Maybe not like Tony Romo would get recognized but still recognized.