I don't know if I'll ever get into much detail about what led to my resignation on Monday, or whether it's important, or whether anyone cares.
But on Tuesday night I accepted an invitation from the moderators of Islandermania, the team's "official" fan message board, to attempt to set the record straight. As you will see, I didn't really do that, but took the opportunity to get a few things off my chest. For those of you not on Imania, here goes:
Letter to Islandermania: posted Tuesday, May 6 at 6:30 pm
Let me begin by stating for the record that I NEVER over-hyped an Islanders prospect, not even Justin Mapletoft.
I’m flattered that my thread on Islandermania is almost as long as the Joel Rechlicz discussion. More than that, the volume of kind words has been overwhelming. I’m going to print out the thread not just to keep for a personal pick-me-up, but to show to my wife. (“See, I’m really not so bad.”)
R.J. suggested I send a note and clear some stuff up. It was a good idea. To be a Long Island kid and get to work for the New York Islanders for 20 years, I’d have to be some special kind of jackass to leave with anything except good feelings.
To answer some of the questions and theories mentioned here and elsewhere…
Chris Dey is one of the kindest gentlemen I have met in this business. We had a major heart-to-heart recently and we decided together that it was best for me to find a second chapter to my career and for the Islanders to find someone else to give this gig a shot. It really was no deeper than that. The franchise, as it always has been, was first-class to me and my family.
On the surface it is so cheap and easy to take shots at Chris, as I have seen a bit here and a few places. Fact is, Chris is a great talent and - better still - a solid man and father. He deserves better than that. Please.
Some other questions…
Do I have another job lined up? I do not. First I have to decide what I want to do. I read on Imania that it’s a virtual slam dunk that after 20 years here my earning power has increased significantly. Very cool.
What will I miss the most in the office? Working with my staff. Working with game ops and events honcho Tim Beach, the best colleague any of us could ever ask for. Working with Garth Snow.
What am I going to do with my blog? Legally, I suppose I have to take down the Islanders logo. Other than that, I don’t know. THAT could be dangerous.
Charles Wang? Real simple. This message board is called Hamilton Blackberrymania if Charles isn’t the owner. It has been a privilege.
Who’s replacing me? I don’t know, but I’m sure it will be someone who “gets it.” Keep in mind that when it comes to Imania, it was Corey Witt who came to me and said, “I know this might sound crazy, but…” Blog Box doesn’t happen without Chris and Charles giving an enlightened thumbs-up. I’m proud of many things we accomplished, but I don’t have all the answers.
What would I do if I was granted one last act with the NYI? Although it’s very important for the franchise to keep moving forward in areas of marketing and communications, I would once and for all restore the jerseys the Islanders wore when they won four Stanley Cups. It wouldn’t be a step back, but rather simply the right thing to do.
I look forward to sitting in the stands with my three boys and enjoying a game. If you see me next season, I really hope you’ll stop by and say hello to a fellow Islanders fan. Don’t forget to let me know when the next tailgate is. Thanks for everything, Imaniacs.