Monday, August 30, 2010

Walsh puts charity in the shadow of client promotion.


I’ll give him this, player agent Allan Walsh certainly knows how to draw attention to himself. If he ever has a lecture on self promotion, I’ll sign up.

The representative of former Montreal Canadiens goaltender Jaroslav Halak pulled another shameless self promotion stunt, but his time he’s using charity as a screen.

Halak will be signing autographs this Saturday at Montreal’s Fairview Mall from 2-4pm. Fees will be $20 and it will be provided 8x10 photos only. Proceeds will benefit a worthy cause, the Ste. Justine’s Children’s Hospital Foundation.

HabsInsideOut’s Mike Boone posed the obvious question as to whether the photos were of Halak in a Blues jersey. It would have been better if fans could bring their own items, but this does tend to slow the process on occasion.

The fact that it’s for charity is certainly a wonderful gesture, but it’s how Walsh went about it that irks me, and it has nothing to due with the fact that Carey Price remains unsigned.

The signing was first tweeted on Saturday by the Team990’s Mitch Melnick under his “alter ego” HunterZThompson as follows:

“Jaro Halak at Fairview next Sat PM to sign, say thanx & raise $ for Koivu Foundation. You're welcome.”

“Great news, and a great gesture by Halak,” was my first thought. Of course the sarcastic side figured he had to come up any way to sign off on the sublet of his condo.

Walsh, in his tweets however tried to make it his own little show, blowing off Melnick’s post by citing it was still in the discussion stage. He then proceeded on Sunday to tweet his own horn, and again on Monday morning with some “big Jaroslav Halak news.”

This is a charity event, so why make it a personal crusade, Mr. Walsh? Or would you rather here us say, “Praise yee oh great agent, as you bring back our playoff saviour to help our ailing children.”

The idea seems sincere from Halak as a chance to thank the fans for his support. I’m pretty sure Walsh originally tweeted it as a chance for the fans to thank his client, then probably reworded it. It wouldn’t be the first time he’s deleted a tweet, right?

The move by Walsh of course spurned more fire against the player rep. Once his client was traded, Walsh quickly isolated himself from any Twitter followers connected to the Montreal Canadiens.

Some of us might have had it coming (the tail end of my post on the trade was “Gauthier gives Walsh the FU”). But clearly the man is gutless, as instead of diplomatically handling the situation, he elected to block a series of followers.

The days events spurred more discussion from my fellow bloggers. The Checking Line’s George Prax quickly added a “Blocked by Allan Walsh Club” to his site.

One clever Twitterite even created a “Blocked by Walsha” twibbon.

Again I want to stress that this has nothing against Jaroslav Halak, or the charitable benefits of the event, although the fact that Ste. Justine’s Foundation website has no mention of it also irks me.

Perhaps their web-tech doesn’t maintain it regularly, but it would have been better if Mr.Walsh had worked further in advance to give fans unable to attend some opportunity to get in on the signing.

My advice to Mr.Walsh would be to have his client sign some extra photos, and allow the hospital to use them at their discretion. I haven’t had a chance to hear his comments from this afternoon on the Team990, so maybe he did offer that…Who are we kidding.

In the event fans can’t make it on Saturday, here is the link to donate to the foundation directly.

In the meantime, maybe Mr. Walsh will consider a simple press release the next go around, when his client has a farewell engagement in St. Louis.

Perron weighs in on Halak: St. Louis Blues forward David Perron participated in former Canadiens star Alex Kovalev’s golf tournament on Monday in Ile-Brizard. The winger spoke to the media on his new teammate with great expectations. “I've heard so much about him, and I can not wait to see it in action,” said Perron, who feels the netminder will fit in well with a young team going in the right direction.

1 comment:

Professor Prax said...

Truth be told I'm just kind of having fun with the situation. It's gotten to the point of ridiculousness with this guy. There's no reason for him to even have anything to do with this city anymore. He could have just kept his mouth shut, allowed the news to slip through cracks or put out a press release and leave it at that. PK Subban had a similar charity signing the other day and no one was talking about that.

Walsh is an asshole and a narcissist, and he tops my list of people who I want to punch in the face. But if we can have a little fun with this, then why not. Try to put a fun twist on a clearly ridiculous situation. He's banned half the damn fanbase from his twitter account!

The best possible comparable is an ex-girlfriend who blocks all her ex's friends from facebook after the wake up. And that's what Walsh is. An obnoxious ex-girlfriend that no one likes.

And sorry for the cheap plug (I know you gave me one already so thanks for that) but I thought it would be appropriate to link to my post back in November that probably got me blocked lol: