Earlier today, Puck Daddy ran an article questioning the legitimacy of the Glen Wesley jersey retirement ceremony. First of all, he implied that the ceremony might have been concocted just as a means to fill up seats.
We're in an age where teams are hurting at the gate, and an easy way to sellout your building is to bring a player from the past back by either a jersey honoring or retirement.
While there is little argument that the jersey retirement ceremony of a popular player will enhance attendance, the Canes have been selling out the RBC for recent games, even without the help of any extra pomp and circumstance.
- 2/12/09 18,680
- 2/14/09 18,680
- 2/17/09 18,680 (Wesley Night)
- 2/20/09 17,711
- 2/22/08 18,680
Then the author gives another possible reason for the honor:
The determining factor between both ceremonies seemed to be that Wesley and Graves were part of a Stanley Cup championship run and were good people off the ice, but should there be more to the standard?
I could be wrong here and I hate to speak for Jim Rutherford, but I don't think that winning the Stanley Cup had much to do with the decision to retire Wesley's number. Wesley probably would have been given the same honor, Cup run, or not.
The Puck Daddy article is a perfect example of why each individual team should have the freedom to make these decisions and the criteria should never be league mandated. Most hockey fans outside of the area and unfamiliar with the inner workings of the team might be totally clueless as to why Wesley would be chosen. And should that matter?
Most fans of the Canes seemed to agree wholeheartedly with the decision.
Not only did Wesley play more games in a Hurricanes jersey than any other player, he ranks 6th in NHL history for most games ever played by a defenseman. We won't even get into everything that he did locally to help to grow the sport in the area.
What do you think? Should the Hurricanes have retired Glen Wesley's jersey?