It is nice to see that there are still good guys in the NHL. Coming off the Sean Avery fiasco a somewhat positive story is a nice change of pace. Alex Burrows, Taylor Pyatt and Ryan Kesler said they will pull out of what could have been a controversial signing session near Metrotown on Dec. 21.The three Canucks players were to be the main attractions for an autograph signing at a supplements store at a cost of $30 for a small Item and $40 for a large item. This was not at a convention or card show either just a promo event that usually brings in people to get foot traffic into a store not try and make a lot of money from the fans.
It isn’t just the fact that they were charging for the autographs but the high cost that they were to be asking $5-$10 max...$30 is ridiculous, especially for less then "premier" players. It is good to see that they had the common sense to get out of that deal or they would have run the risk of looking bad.
I collect autographs myself and have gotten cards signed by Kesler at least and have had no trouble and got them back through the mail (TTM) in a timely fashion at no cost (except postage of course). I would have been disappointed had he followed through and this tarnished him in any way. Burrows said of his autograph: "I don’t think I’m worth $30, not my autograph. You can’t even recognize my autograph, so I don’t think it would make sense. I don’t want to be the kind of guy to do something like that."
Apparently, Andrew Cogliano and Sam Gagner of the Oilers had a similar problem that garnered national attention when they were at a card show that was charging $25. Gagner is another player that I have gotten an autograph from in his junior days so at least then he was very forthcoming. Perhaps as a pro things have changed.
In my experience hockey players in general are some of the best at signing and returning autographs both from the NHL level to the Junior ranks. It goes to show that for the most part they are a pretty decent bunch and it is good that we can include Burrows, Pyatt and Kesler in that group.