I've always admired Mats Sundin, though not unconditionally. There have always been conditions. One of those conditions, the first, is to continually bring respect to the Maple Leaf uniform. Beware readers: I may have turned a corner here.
Poker? Seriously, poker. P-O-K-E-R. Mats Sundin is playing poker. Yes, poker. Not hockey. Not sticks and skates and pucks and speed and courage and honour. Nope. Poker. A game you play with a deck of cards and plastic coloured chips. Not Crazy Eights, but close. It's poker. A game that just isn't fun unless you play for money. I would've thought Go Fish was more Sundin's style.
"I have always enjoyed playing poker and partnering with PokerStars gives me the opportunity to challenge myself and explore the full potential of my game."
PokerStars. Not Bob Gainey. He only gave Sundin the opportunity to join a glorious franchise for their historic 100th season. Only the challenge of being a key component on a team with the most potential to rival Pittsburgh for a spot in the Cup Final. That's all.
"It means I will be more able to fulfill my personal ambition of working with charities around the world and I will be donating 100 percent of the money I earn from playing poker to charity."
Gosh, what a beautiful sweetheart. Another way Mats could fulfill his ambition of working with charities around the world would be to play for the Vancouver Canucks. They're sorta needy and unfortunate. Then Sundin could donate 100 percent of 10 million dollars to charity and it would really be win-win, except, of course, when the Canucks lose, which they would still do often, even with Sundin.
"I believe the fighting spirit I've developed as a hockey pro will really help me at the tables."
That's not a "fighting spirit". It's called a "Country Club atmosphere", and it seems to be floating on Sundin's shoulders wherever he goes. But yes, that Country Club atmosphere he's cultivated will certainly help him at the tables.
Thank goodness Sundin is no longer Captain of the Toronto Maple Leafs. It would be an odd situation, to say the least, to have the leader of the league's most prestigous team openly endorsing online gambling. To be fair, PokerStars.com is just poker and has no links to slots, horse-racing, or sports-wagering. The ultra chic design seems to suggest that this is a place for up-scale, mature online gamblers, not teenagers and college students. The frequent player points program seems to encourage and reward dedication to this popular online activity. Just like death will reward me for my dedication to smoking cigarettes.
Thankfully, most of the young people who admire Sundin are not the least bit impressionable. Unlike Mats, they are more then capable of making up their own minds and making their own decisions. By the way, how's that coming? Any progress?
"I will not make up my mind before the season starts. That's how I feel right now. If I would feel like retiring, I would say it."
Of course. Take your time. What about poker? Will Mats play in any more tournaments?
...(sigh) I'm not sure Mats should come back to Toronto anymore. He can go play in Vancouver and build a Country Club out there. We're trying to get serious about winning hockey games, not card games. If you get more excited at the prospect of holding a Royal Flush then you do touching the Stanley Cup, then there is something seriously wrong with you. That sure as hell ain't leadership.
...(sigh) I've had another moment to think about it - I didn't realize it was this bad - Mats Sundin has lost his mind and no one can help him. This is going to get worse. Michael Jackson worse.