Its moving time of year in sports. NFL teams are solidifying their roster for training camps, NHL and NBA are just a few days into their free agency period and MLB clubs are looking at what trades can be made before the deadline. I’m happy to see one growing trend in sports signings. Its not big contracts which are still happening or a bunch of guys going to one team its players signing with their home town team.
The big news was that Zach Parise and Ryan Suter signed with the Minnesota Wild. A team far from tops of the conference. It had been rumored that the usual places were on their list including Philly, Detroit, and New jersey among the few but both players choose the wild due to their family connections. Parise is from Minnesota, has a home there and his parents are still there. Suter is from Madison, Wisconsin which is about 5 hours away and with Wisconsin not having a pro team this makes sense for Suter. His wife is also from the Minneapolis area as well. I know both players have a long relationship from their years on junior teams and obviously every player wants to play with the best players out there. But playing at home is always a huge plus.
Other players are following the trend. In NBA news Steve Nash was part of a sign and trade that sent him to the Lakers. Now disregard the fact he gets to play with Kobe Bryant. It was rumored that he was thinking about retiring to be closer to his kids who happen to live in…you guessed it LA. Martin Broduer who I know is Canadian decided to sign with the devils which has been his home for 20 years..
Its also not a new trend its just now growing in popularity. Back in 2010 Joe Mauer signed an 8 year contract to stay with his home town team the Twins. Derek Fisher has chosen family over career a lot in the past few years. He asked to be released from the Utah Jazz to be closer to LA so his sick daughter could get treatment and then after being traded to the Houston Rockets decided to play for the Oklahoma City Thunder which is about as close as to a home team as he could have being from Arkansas.
Derek Rose is currently playing in Chicago his home town and I can’t imagine him leaving the city for anywhere else. Perhaps its just a reversal in mind set from the LeBron choice to leave his home town to play in Miami but its nice to see players put family and home first. If only the Sabres could get Patrick Kane to come home life would be good, but for now lets aplaud those athletes that decided there is no place like home