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Tom Barrasso: Real life jerk, or unfair portrayal from the media?

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Old
05-03-2013, 05:01 PM
  #26
#66
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I met him once. He seemed surprised that I knew who he was, put his coffee on the ground and signed for me. This was during his cup years.

I think he came up with a lot of attitude, most pro's do, and by the time he matured the media really were going after him. Then he just got bitter about it. Its two wrongs making a wrong and in the end no one wins. He always says that when he was with the Pens he put winning ahead of personal stats. That's all I really need to know about Tom Barrasso as I'm pretty sure that more than a few goalies from the same time period wouldn't even think it.

It still shouldn't take away from everything he's done. He was a huge part of two cups and could've/ should've won a Conn Smyth.

Do we even bring up the NHL media in this thread? For every good one there's... well did anyone else see the Ottawa Sun today?

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05-03-2013, 10:15 PM
  #27
Big Phil
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wunderpanda View Post
Definitely bitter a few years later tho

The thing with Barrasso is that he's 100% right in this instance. When he was in Buffalo he jumped into the NHL at 18. Wins the Vezina right away. Not sure a lot of teenagers could handle that type of fame. Therefore there could be many stories about the guy that are true. But in all honesty I've never heard Mario or Jagr or Francis or anyone publicly speaking ill about the guy. Or maybe I haven't looked hard enough. I mean, if he was trouble when he was in Buffalo that image could have followed him throughout his career. From there on every story about a player would be magnified. For example, Jose Canseco used to get raked over the coals by the media in his playing days. I remember just as well assuming he was a criminal. Then you read his book "Juiced" and he goes into great detail about a long of things. It sort of changes your mind on things.

I just wonder if this is the same case with Barrasso.

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05-04-2013, 01:36 AM
  #28
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I don't think him being a jerk to his backups should really be held against him too strongly, a lot of goalies treat their backups like second class citizens; Belfour, Roy, etc, etc.

Him being an ass to fans is awful but it could just be a case like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar where it depends on when you catch him. A lot of people think Kareem is a complete ***** when they meet him but I had a great experience. I'm sure for each horrible experience someone had meeting Tommy there's another one where he was friendly, shook hands, signed, and took a picture. There's some guys who you will never ever hear a good thing about as far as fan interaction goes.

He isn't a bad guy, after his daughter's bout with cancer he started a charitable fund for research. It is kinda strange though, as horrible as he was with his backups that he ended up becoming a goalie coach for Carolina.

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05-04-2013, 08:58 AM
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mco543 View Post
I don't think him being a jerk to his backups should really be held against him too strongly, a lot of goalies treat their backups like second class citizens; Belfour, Roy, etc, etc.

Him being an ass to fans is awful but it could just be a case like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar where it depends on when you catch him. A lot of people think Kareem is a complete ***** when they meet him but I had a great experience. I'm sure for each horrible experience someone had meeting Tommy there's another one where he was friendly, shook hands, signed, and took a picture. There's some guys who you will never ever hear a good thing about as far as fan interaction goes.

He isn't a bad guy, after his daughter's bout with cancer he started a charitable fund for research. It is kinda strange though, as horrible as he was with his backups that he ended up becoming a goalie coach for Carolina.
I do remember that thing with his daughter. I want to say it was 1990 or so. Look, imagine having your little girl with cancer. That's just downright depressing. Throw in the pressures of playing in the NHL, the media continuing to act like snakes regardless of what is going on in your life and I think you can easily have a recipe for a guy who is standoffish to the public at times. It is true, Adam Graves lost an infant son during his NHL career and never seemed to develop an attitude but different people handle things differently.

I'm not saying it excuses all of Barrasso's reported behaviour, but it does paint a broader picture.

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05-04-2013, 09:19 AM
  #30
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Well he can't be worse than Michael Jordan.

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05-04-2013, 10:09 AM
  #31
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Let's make sure to mind the "libel" rules on the board - and don't bring out anything that's not already in the public domain.

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05-04-2013, 11:03 AM
  #32
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My father used to play with him when they were kids in Burlington. He said that Tom was a cocky young kid (most of us from Mass. are) but he was decent person off the ice. Had a temper and was ultra competitive, but his body language made him look like more of a jerk than he really was. But this was before the NHL..

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05-04-2013, 07:56 PM
  #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nutbar View Post
Well, there was the time when he was with Ottawa when he told Scott Oake during an on-camera interview that he "doesn't give a **** what you people in the media say".

quote is in the Alfie article, middle column

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05-06-2013, 06:06 AM
  #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
Much has been made about Tom Barrasso and his personality. We all know the media as a general rule are ******** and they tell you what to think more than you like to know. However, since Barrasso has always been painted as a rude person do you think this portrayal is accurate or just unfair?
Him and some of hie Pens teammates were in the bar I ran in Vancouver many many moons ago and he seemed like a nice guy

Some players just want to play the game and not answer the same questions day after day

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05-06-2013, 06:13 AM
  #35
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I hope not, because I have the biggest Barrasso card collection ever.

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02-03-2015, 11:43 AM
  #36
vadim sharifijanov
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an old article from buffalo before barrasso was traded for bodger:

Quote:
Forget all the pap the two goalies spouted for public consumption, the stuff about there being no rivalry, that the competition makes them both sharper, etc.

An anecdote concerning helmets that each of the goalies had made within the last year clarifies the feeling between the two. When Barrasso had his helmet fitted a year ago, the inscription on the back read “A.W. -- 30.” The “A.W.” stood for “all-world,” a description of him first made by a Sabre scout who saw him play for his Massachusetts high school.

When Puppa later had his helmet fitted, the engraving on the back of his helmet read “A.U. -- 31.” The “A.U.” stood for “all-universe,” a higher standard, of course, than “all-world.”

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02-04-2015, 11:00 AM
  #37
tony d
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Yeah, Barrasso's relationship with the media was rather cold. Got to think that's why he's not in the Hall yet.

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02-05-2015, 12:56 AM
  #38
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When all is said and done, will Marshawn Lynch eventually get in the Football HOF? I can't imagine them keeping him out even if the media resents him. Lynch is a lot like Barrasso that way, but like Barrasso he is a winner and a competitor. Should grudges honestly keep players like these out?

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02-05-2015, 02:01 PM
  #39
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I met him briefly after a game in Montreal when he was with Buffalo in the early years. He was carrying a bunch of equipment but was smiling, said some nice words to me, signed an autograph. I remember it like yesterday because he was my favorite player and I told him so (full disclosure). Visiting players used to just walk out onto the street from a small lobby exit on the side street (Closse) to get to the bus. You could even stand in the lobby area, there were no guards around and the players would just walk out by themselves or in small groups: Gretzky, Lemieux, all of them. They would suddenly appear in the lobby from around the corner, like the walked off the face of a hockey card.

Keenan did the same to me once too and talked to me for about five minutes.

So, you cannot believe everything you read.


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02-05-2015, 07:20 PM
  #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
When all is said and done, will Marshawn Lynch eventually get in the Football HOF? I can't imagine them keeping him out even if the media resents him. Lynch is a lot like Barrasso that way, but like Barrasso he is a winner and a competitor. Should grudges honestly keep players like these out?

They shouldn't but they will. I know the Hockey HOF isn't voted on by sports writers so this doesn't seem to apply to that specific institution as much as it does to Cooperstown, etc. but this is really the only power the writers have. It seems very much like high school; the athletes are the big jocks and the writers are the vindictive nerds who felt mistreated, them withholding a vote for a player is their way of thumbing their nose at them and thinking it's their revenge. In reality the writers care a lot more than the players and it comes off as incredibly petty and pathetic.

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02-05-2015, 10:27 PM
  #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
The thing with Barrasso is that he's 100% right in this instance. When he was in Buffalo he jumped into the NHL at 18. Wins the Vezina right away. Not sure a lot of teenagers could handle that type of fame. Therefore there could be many stories about the guy that are true. But in all honesty I've never heard Mario or Jagr or Francis or anyone publicly speaking ill about the guy. Or maybe I haven't looked hard enough. I mean, if he was trouble when he was in Buffalo that image could have followed him throughout his career. From there on every story about a player would be magnified. For example, Jose Canseco used to get raked over the coals by the media in his playing days. I remember just as well assuming he was a criminal. Then you read his book "Juiced" and he goes into great detail about a long of things. It sort of changes your mind on things.

I just wonder if this is the same case with Barrasso.
No, he's really not. He's speaking in generalities instead of specifics for a reason.

http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/sh...23&postcount=4

Barrasso's anti-media blackout was not a Marshawn Lynch style "You're trying to create drama out of nothing, so I'm not talking to you." He was mad they didn't spike a story about him being arrested for witness intimidation terroristic threats (a straight news story that merely quoted from a police report) and decided to spite them.

On other occasions he gave the same treatment to Patrick Lalime for daring to outplay him and worse treatment to JS Aubin for having the temerity to sustain a concussion on Barrasso's scheduled day off.

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02-07-2015, 10:32 PM
  #42
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I knew his kid was dealing with cancer back in the day but I never understood how he could just blow by kids (he did it to me numerous times) and not give autographs considering what his daughter was going through...just seemed so odd that he wouldn't sign for even a kid where he should have the softest spot for..

Hope he gets into the Hall, but he was a *****..

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02-07-2015, 11:00 PM
  #43
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Barrasso is a disgusting person & treats fans like garbage which includes children.

I do not have any Penguins memorabilia with him on it because I threw in the garbage after meeting him on multiple occasions with the Penguins.

I met him while he was an assistant coach with Carolina & he is still a complete *******.

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02-07-2015, 11:44 PM
  #44
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He sounds like a terrible human being.

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02-11-2015, 11:05 AM
  #45
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I don‘t really remember him at his best. I remember him as the middle-to-late nineties once-upon-a-time burnout who became a bit of headache, but it didn‘t really seem exceptional. Goalies in general appear to be prone to overstay their twilight till they become a burden.

Having read Jagr‘s first biography that summed up his beginnings and his outset in the NHL (five years with the Pens till ‘95), I can only transcribe what the young Jags had to say about him as he introduced his teammates.

„As great a goalie as Tom is, he‘s not very popular with the team. He‘s perceived as smug. Once, when the team (sans Tom) went out for a dinner, a limo parked by, someone pointed at it and said, ‚Barrasso, ain‘t it...‘”

That was pretty much everything he had to say about the guy who was possibly the second most instrumental part of the early nineties Pens‘ success. He also noted they missed him (in the goal) later on.

It got me thinking though, at least among the nineties star goalies, I would have issues personally liking at least a half, if not most of them. Joseph, yes. Brodeur, yes. Roy? No! Hasek? Well, he had a schoolteacher aura about him, sorta moralizing, sorta righteous, rigorous, but quite dangerous in his own right. Like, if you did something he didn‘t consider legit, he might slap you as well. No-one I would like to spend a holiday with. Now that I think about it, he even may have graduated from college to become one of the teaching slappers. Lucky them, kids, lucky them he played hockey (and it applies twice).

If I look among the Czech goalies in the NHL, only of Turek and Hnilicka I ever thought as „normal”. The latter I always considered one of the most likable goaltending guys, but one of the worst of them, too. I closed my eyes every time a shot headed his way whenever he played for the NT. He was way worse than Cechmanek at his worst, but often he was the one guarding the net, for, I always thought, he was so easy-going. I think it was in the spring of 99 when by the WCH, he was a number one (reason I considered Hlinka, the coach, a stubborn schmuck). Not sure at what stage, we met Canada and as Milan was his usual-self, it went into a shootout. Easily, he let in the first two, and I screamed, „let the mean one in!”

The coach did, to a shock of Canadian commentators, who said something like, „Hlinka is either genius, or insane!”

The truth was, he at last conceded the better although less appealing ‘tender should play, for he himself damn well knew the cold Cechmanek was still better than Hnilicka at his best. Roman saved the rest of them, we went through, and in the next match, Milan was back in the net.

By ‘05 or ‘06, he „lacked any composure” (saying this to be polite) so badly that often, especially in the scrum, he had no idea where the puck was, either looking in the very opposite direction making „saves” or thinking he‘s got it saved right under him, lying on his back all stiff, staring on the ceiling, waiting for the blow, while the opposition kept trying to score and his defenders made the saves. Maybe his seeing (and hearing) were not so good by then, but he became one of the most clueless men I‘ve ever seen goaltending at the highest level.

Cechmanek, on the other hand, was perhaps our best tender behind Hasek at one point, but one of the most off-putting guys. While his first season with the Flyers is widely considered a fluke, he really was that good, but somehow mental. I don‘t know what happened to him, but I doubt anyone ever missed him anywhere.

Vokoun was funny. Long before I even saw his face, I had seen him pinned to that great stat of 12.00 GAA, as on his debut with the Canadiens, he conceded 4 in one period, got pulled, and he waited for another chance a long long time with GP:1, GAA: 12.00 (imagine it was you, pottering around the league with this resumé).

No wonder his face expression so often suggested as though Tomas spotted a bugaboo at every corner. I always thought he would never become any good, and he proved me wrong, although with him in the net for the NT, I never felt as secure as with Hasek or Turek at their best.

I sorta suggest most of the goalies are weird, the better they are, the higher the probability they‘ll be kinda odd, so for his exceptionally bad rep, given his own teammates, even while he still was a part of the team, kinda condemned him, Tom very likely was somehow special. Then again, the press never wait if given a chance, right? The only bubble they‘ll never help burst in the end is the mean one.

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Old
02-13-2015, 11:11 PM
  #46
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his own teammates didn't like him

Quote:
"(J-S) Aubin has moved into the locker room stall formerly occupied by Tom Barrasso at the Penguins' Southpointe practice rink, and it quickly became clear that his sense of humor made the trip with him. When a writer approached Aubin's new stall - not a place where media members were particularly welcome in recent years - after yesterday's workout, Aubin looked at him and said dryly, "No, no questions!"

Then, unlike the previous tenant, he smiled. Broadly.

Barrasso never was accused of being Aubin's biggest backer, so Aubin clearly wasn't upset to see him leave."
http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...3815%2C4798447


Quote:
Ask Patrick Lalime how great a teammate he was. Apparently when Barrasso signed with Ottawa as a backup when Lalime was the starter someone from the press asked about being reunited with him and asked about what it will be like to have Barrasso as a teammate again. Lalime said something like "He never said a word to me in Pittsburgh, I don't expect that to change here."
http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/sh...7&postcount=64

I know I've seen the above quote in the Post-Gazette before and even referenced it in a post, but I can't seem to find it "at this hour"

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Old
02-13-2015, 11:56 PM
  #47
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I've heard plenty of negative feelings toward TOM. Its hard not to think at least some of these stories are true.

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