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Enigmatic Yakupov and The Bounce Back
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08-16-2014, 01:47 PM
Join Date: Apr 2005
Originally Posted by
I don't get it either. He's awesome with his fans. If he was Canadian, fat a55es like Terry Jones would probably carry him around on their shoulders.
Just a short vignette. on TJ and Yakupov. The first *interaction* I noted between the two was at Milennium place in the prospects training camp a couple years back. YaK had just finished scoring multiple goals in scrimmage, interacting with fans, being amazing on the ice, and was head and shoulders better than anybody around him. Every eye was transfixed on Yak and you could pick him out on the ice the moment he hit it. Spontaneous cheers, clapping and people even getting up out of their seats was noticed. TJ sitting near us looked to be oblivious.
After the practice and scrimmage many fans and scribes waited for the Oilers to leave the facility to talk with them, get autographs signed and such. Microphones/interviews featuring Yak and others took place. After 20mins of this we left to see TJ sitting outside alone on a parkbench. Struck me immediately as an odd sight when his colleagues were all inside.
Not saying it means anything but he was one of the few on the day that were indifferent to what Yak was bringing. Every kid in the place was ecstatic, fans were smiling, Yak was smiling, TJ was seemingly indifferent.
My own take is that TJ will always defer to the glory years oilers and that none of these current players, including Yak, really matter to him all that much. I always think he's just playing out the career string thinking of better days. This used to be a passion for him, now its just a job.
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