SportsProf

(Hopefully) good sports essays and observations for good sports by a guy who tries (and can sometimes fail) to be a good sport.

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Friday, January 25, 2013

Things

1980 U.S. Olympic hockey hero Mike Eruzione is selling his jersey and stick.  He'll take the proceeds, put some in his foundation and use some of it for a nest egg for him and his kids.

On the one hand, it's tough to see great players part with their own memorabilia, especially when they need the funds to live on.  

On the other hand, it goes to show you that perhaps what's more important to these former players is not their tools of the trade, but their memories.  Mike Eruzione will always have them, and no one can take them away from him.  And it's likely that those memories provide him with much more psychic file than the memorabilia ever did or will.

Memorabilia collectors fascinate me.  Do they really like to collect, or is it the thrill of the acquisition (after which perhaps they suffer some remorse because they might have paid too much)?  Memorabilia can be nice things, so I don't want to knock them.

But at the end of the day, it's the memories, isn't it?  Whether someone played in the game or is a fan, we remember where we were, with whom we played or watched, and how we felt?  Did we watch the game with our roommates?  Or long-since-deceased Uncle Joe, the fellow with the earpiece in at family functions so that he could listen to the hometown baseball team's games?  Or was it something we did with Dad, which by definition made it special?

Things always have a price.

Memories, though, are priceless.

And Mike Eruzione helped create some of the best sports memories for a generation of Americans.

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