Occasionally at Flames Nation we will intercept some email correspondence into and out of the Scotiabank Saddledome. This is one of those times.
You’ve been doing a great job in Penticton so far (Joni Ortio not so much) and I wanted to say thanks. You’ve really been creating a lot of chances, and it’s really encouraging to see a player who’s Flames property under the age of 27 actually play like he wants a job in the NHL one day. Very refreshing. Like a tall, cool glass of milk with a nice afternoon snack of cookies.
But that’s not the reason I’m writing. I’m writing because I was looking over some draft notes the other day and noticed something. Your name is Sven Bärtschi. And well, I’m just a little worried. The problem here is twofold:
1) The little dot things over the A in your last name alone will cost us a fortune and I need that money to pursue both big-name free agents and dinner.
2) You play in the WHL, right? In Portland, Oregon? In the United States? That’s why we drafted you. Then it turns out you’re SWISS? Outrageous. Especially because, as far as our scouting department can tell, you’re not skilled in making either chocolate or cheese. That’s even worse.
To the latter point, I would also add that since finding out about it, I’ve been doing one heck of a job distracting the media, the local fans, and this one mumbly guy that keeps calling my office (and telling me that he is being quite honest) from the fact that you’re from Sweden or whatever. I thought your first name was "Steven" when we drafted you, and that the Central Scouting info was just full of typos. Incidentally, that’s the same reason why we also took that tiny Gaudreau kid. Why would the CALGARY FLAMES draft an AMERICAN who’s FIVE-FOOT-SIX otherwise?
Anyway, if you could stop listening to weird European dance music in the dressing room when the media show up, that’d be great. Don’t want to arouse any more suspicion than we already have. We’re also sending down some cowboy boots and Curtis Glencross is gonna show you how to ride a horse. If anyone asks, you grew up in Strathcona.
I know it’s a bit of an inconvenience — especially because we’ll also be asking you to start moving hay bales out in front of the Saddledome during the season — but we’re just starting out getting the team in order again and, well, we don’t want to rock the boat too much. If you could do all that, you’d really be helping the organization. Believe me, that dotty A is gonna be more trouble than Khabibulin on a bender. Habit and precedence demands the Flames draft nothing but good ol’ prairie boys so you understand my conundrum. In fact (and you didn’t hear this from me), your future ability to crack the Flames roster will be directly moderated by your willingness to affect a western farm boy pose. So start working on that accent Sve…er…Steven. And let’s stick with that "Baertschi" spelling for your sweater.