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Neely defends Thomas skipping White House visit

Jan 23, 2012, 3:32 PM EDT


Tim Thomas has yet to personally explain his absence from today’s Bruins visit to the White House, where his teammates were honored by President Barack Obama for winning the Stanley Cup. He’ll reportedly do that later on his Facebook page.

However, team president Cam Neely has confirmed that Thomas’s non-appearance was politically motivated.

“Everybody has their own opinions and political beliefs. He chose not to join us,” said Neely, as per “We certainly would have liked to have him come and join us. But it’s his choice. It’s obviously not a choice most of the guys…well, all of the guys came except for Tim. But it’s his decision and his choice.”

  1. back2backbees - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

    Bravo Tim!

  2. solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:40 PM

    I guess Timmy was upset that he wasn’t going to get a chance to review Obama’s birth certificate personally.

    • luvsyellopuzy - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:07 PM

      Thomas doesn’t strike me as a Hillary Clinton supporter, the ones who started the birther nonsense.

      • solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:21 PM

        He also doesn’t strike me as an Osama Bin Laden supporter… so the least Timmy can do is pose for a picture with the man who “coordinated” the “capture” of the number 1 villain since Hitler.

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:25 PM

        @solador: So, your logic is that Thomas supports Al Qaeda because he doesn’t want to visit the White House.

        Please don’t run for office.

      • solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:36 PM

        I didn’t make the rule: “You’re either with us or you’re with the terrorists.”

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:51 PM

        No, GWB made it, and it was the most inflammatory and BS piece of rhetoric ever uttered by a President. And you’ve taken it several steps further by saying that because a freaking hockey player doesn’t want to visit the White House, he’s suddenly against the USA and supports its destruction.

        A completely brainless stance.

      • solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:00 PM

        No, I’m just pointing out the hypocrisy in Bush/Republican supporter Tim Thomas’ position.

        Thank you for summarizing it so well.

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:36 PM

        You don’t know a damn thing about Thomas’ reasoning. He hasn’t posted anything on the subject, and you don’t know him personally.

      • spiffy53 - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:59 PM

        drewsylvania, cut us a break. you a tool.

    • luckywi - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:21 PM

      Well, except Cam Neely just said it WAS politically motivated, in this very post.

  3. bcisleman - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:42 PM

    Tim Thomas is a moron. I don’t care how good he is at what he does. I am VERY glad that he doesn’t play for my team.

    • madtolive5 - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:47 PM

      Yeah sucks having a GAA under 2, highest Save % ever in a season and winning the Vez, the Cup and the Con in the same season…..

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:51 PM

      What a thoughtful, accurate post. Do you make house calls to spew your wisdom? My dog could use some.

      • habsman - Jan 23, 2012 at 7:11 PM

        Your dog has enough problems.

  4. obamablowz - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:42 PM

    Totally off the topic, Just great to see so many people posting on NHL news!!!! Two months ago almost every article had maybe 2 comments. Thank you hockey fans!!!!!

    • hystoracle - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:52 PM

      I f Boston, or Vancouver , or even better Vancouver vs. Boston is in the subject it gets torn up in the comments. If it is not you get 2 comments on a good day.

    • imleftcoast - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:37 PM

      You blow. Maybe you should stick to a topic you something about like diddling your sister.

  5. csndrew - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:45 PM

    Unless Thomas gets thoroughly grilled for this move, both locally and nationally, this opens up a very slippery slope.

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:53 PM

      For ducking invites from the White House? Big deal.

  6. crmgoodness - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:50 PM

    Selfish and disrespectful to both his teammates and the office. It’s not a political rally and it has nothing to do with the political beliefs or policies of the particular president in office. It’s a tradition and whether it’s George Bush, Barrack Obama or God help us Newt Gingrich in that office, I’d be going with my team to be honored. I’m a Bruins fan, and I love Tim Thomas’ refreshing interviews and goofy demeanor but this type of divisive nonsense disappoints me to no end.

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:52 PM

      Maybe it *should* have to do with the policies of the president in office. Why not? The federal government is fallible in so, so many ways.

      • solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:58 PM

        Obama benefits from the same corporate donors as Bush.

        VP Joe Biden represents the state where half of the Fortune 500 evade paying their fair share of taxes and have reaped the benefits of socialist handouts.

        Obama, Bush, John Kerry, Mitt Romney… all work for the same people.. ie. Bruins owner and Chairman of the NHL Board: Jeremy Jacobs.

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:11 PM

        @solador: We don’t know Timmy’s specific reasons because he hasn’t voiced them yet. He might have a point. We’ll see when he talks about it.

        But I don’t get why we should sanctify the office of the President like we do. It’s the job of the President and the rest of the government to…govern. Over at least the last few Presidents, the office has done a spectacularly poor job at helping the less fortunate get on their feet. (And I mean “helping”–not enabling) Instead, the government has done all in it’s power to make the rich richer and the poor poorer.

        Such a government does not deserve much respect. It sure doesn’t deserve any player’s attendance, if that player has a problem with that government.

      • solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:25 PM

        Timmy is a well-traveled and educated man.

        We can only pray that he’s a Ralph Nader guy.

        Somehow I doubt it when his paychecks are signed by Bush/Clinton/Kerry/Romney donor Jeremy Jacobs.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:59 PM

      Thanks crm, you saved me some time!! Well put.

  7. stanjonathon - Jan 23, 2012 at 3:54 PM

    As a B’s fan, Thomas is a clown. He’s free to do what he wants even if it reflects badly on his team, the NHL and hockey in general. VISA and USA Hockey are also free to decide not to run his ads on TV or allow him to wear a USA Hockey sweater if he’s so disdainful of this country’s institutions (in this case, the Office of the Presidency) as to not show up like every other athlete who disagreed with the disaster of the Bush presidency, when the White House and the President of the United States was honoring their team.

    The next time we’re interested in the political views of a hockey goalie we’ll ask Timmy, ok? Now shut up and go back to doing the only thing we’re paying you to do which is stop pucks. But now that he’s shined a big light on himself it will be interesting to see what other extreme Glenn Beck nonsense Thomas believes.

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:13 PM

      He chose not to go. He didn’t make a big deal out of not going. It is the media and people like you that are making a big deal out of it. So it’s not Thomas who needs to shut up here.

      • eyecorporations - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:28 PM

        Choosing to not go in the first place turns it into a big deal, and he’s also apparently spending the day preparing a statement to be released on Facebook?

        If he didn’t want it to be a big deal he would’ve just gone like everyone else.

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:33 PM

        He’s releasing a statement because of the uproar he knew would be coming. If you and the media didn’t care, he wouldn’t bother releasing a statement.

      • luckywi - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:26 PM

        A statement on Facebook? How about standing in front of some camera’s like a man?

    • themohel - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:40 PM

      Hey, Stan, I bet you got just as fired up when musicians, actors, etc., engaged in anti-Bush rants during his administration, huh? I bet they were “just exercising their First Amendment rights” back then, but THIS is different, “he’s being mean to a guy I like!” …. That said, I would have gone if I were in Timmy’s place, but it ain’t no thing if an athlete doesn’t go see Bush or Obama.

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:52 PM

        Exactly. Why is this so hard to understand?

  8. byebyejoshmcd - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:00 PM

    Who cares if he skips this? Athletes miss these things all the time for a variety of reasons; some even choose not to attend. Agree with them or not, he has strong political beliefs and chose not to attend because of them. It’s really not that serious

  9. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:07 PM

    Didn’t there used to be a time when people would still have a shred of respect for their President even if they disagreed with his politics? I just lost a lot of respect for Thomas

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:14 PM

      The office of the President has earned a lot of disrespect recently. I don’t blame him. And I dislike the GOP.

      • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:57 PM

        It has garnered that disrespect because people are disagreeing with Obama’s politics to a more extreme degree than ever before, which in itself is a problem. The man is your President and deserves a little respect whether you agree with him or not.

  10. geo59 - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:09 PM

    It’s not Obama’s policies, Thomas probably wouldn’t know a conservative policy from a liberal one. It’s skin color. Stop kidding yourselves.

    • luvsyellopuzy - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:12 PM

      Of course it is. Obama has such awesomeness that it can’t be his policies that people hate. It’s funny all those idiots that hate him now didn’t know he was black when the voted for him the first time.

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:13 PM

      And Today’s Biggest Troll goes to…

    • solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:14 PM

      Bush vs. Obama

      Foreign Policy? Same.
      Fiscal Policy? Same.
      Tax breaks for the rich? Same.
      Healthcare? Same.

      • luvsyellopuzy - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:18 PM


        Quick, you need to mention Glenn Beck before someone else does

      • solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:35 PM

        Quick, name the Obama policy that you’re most proud of.

        I can wait.

        Printing trillions of new dollars without financial backing in order to barely make Bush’s debt interest payments is my favorite.

        And let’s not forget who decided not to investigate/pardon the previous administration for crimes committed in office.

      • solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:47 PM

        Afghanistan… still there.
        Iraq… still there.
        Guantanamo Bay… yup, you guessed it.

    • goforthanddie - Jan 23, 2012 at 8:02 PM


  11. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:22 PM

    Kudos to Thomas for having the balls to stick up for his beliefs instead of genuflecting in the presence of the power-hungry machine.

    • luvsyellopuzy - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:24 PM

      I think you are overthinking it. Because Peggy didn’t authorize his card, that crazy taxi driver never let him out of the cab.

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:28 PM

        He’s probably making out with the cabbie.

      • eyecorporations - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:29 PM

        Gotta pay off that cab fare somehow…

    • imleftcoast - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:47 PM

      If he were a man, he’d show up and maybe talk to Obama for 5 minutes. If he has such strong political beliefs, he just missed his chance to discuss them with the President. He’s a fool who obviously believes the birther nonesense, and he’s probably a bit of a racist. On top of that, it’s easy to be an opponent of taxes and government services when you have a pile of money in the bank.

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:54 PM

        You’re jumping to wild conclusions like the rest of the cretins.

  12. travishenryskid - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:25 PM

    I’m just glad he didn’t represent us in the Olympics (on the ice, anyway). Piss poor American.

    • themohel - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:45 PM

      And those that spoke out against the Afghan and Iraq wars were “patriots,” right? Funny how someone we agree with is a patriot for giving a viewpoint, but someone we don’t agree with is a “piss poor American” for giving a viewpoint. You are a goof….

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:55 PM

        Good post, though the word is “troll’. Everything out of this guy’s mouth is just amazing.

      • rossco050682 - Jan 23, 2012 at 9:03 PM

        You don’t have to trust your government to be patriotic, you just have to love your country. Not supporting wasting countless blood and treasure on fake corporate run wars IS patriotic. Being a rich person who is a “tea bagger” is un-American, because the “tea baggers” are tools being used by the CORPORATE machine, playing on dumb peoples racist/violent tendencies to manipulate the perception of ordinary citizens.

  13. csndrew - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:25 PM

    Sure, it starts with one guy, but how absurd would it be if only half the players on championship teams showed up to the White House ceremonies each year?

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:31 PM

      It really wouldn’t matter. Either teams would stop going entirely (big deal), or teams would mandate that everyone go–also no big deal.

    • clarenceoveur - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:34 PM

      Totally agree, should leave politics at the door on something like this and respect the office and treat it as an honor. Would become beyond ridiculous if you start seeing half of a team not show up at one of these.

  14. flagnostic - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:29 PM

    Very unpatriotic as well as cowardly. The professional athletes that make a stand in this way because they don’t like the president of either party are just cowards. Think of all the countries that do not allow the freedom for an athlete to become a millionaire while playing a kid’s game. Like GW said, “either you’re with us or you’re with the terrorist.” Good thing he did not go, we now know who he sides with.

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:32 PM

      You colossal idiot. Massive brainpower fail.

    • luvsyellopuzy - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:36 PM

      I don’t get your logic. He should be so grateful of the freedom he has in this country, that he is a coward and should be ashamed by exercising it? And by exercising it, he sides with the terrorists?

      • flagnostic - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:50 PM

        Thanks for pointing that out to all of those neocons that ridiculed the anti-war crowd when GW went to war. I was surprised at how quickly you took the bait! Nice work fish!

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:57 PM

      You’re the fish here. You bought the totally insane lie-fest and propaganda war that GWB perpetrated.

      • arsement - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:03 PM

        Drew… you seem to be very sensitive.

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:12 PM

        When I’m surrounded by people who desire to overthrow the first amendment? Absolutely.

      • arsement - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:38 PM

        Wow… lighten up and get a clue… let other people have their own opinions.

        Wanting to be right all the time will make you miserable.

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:41 PM

        Excuse me? It’s you guys vilifying Thomas for having an opinion.

      • flagnostic - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:15 PM

        Drew baby, that is the entire point – the anti-war crowd did not buy the insane lie-fest and were told they were unpatriotic for exercising their 1st amendment rights. See, you are slightly smarter than you think. Take a deep breath, you’ll get through this.

  15. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:42 PM

    I’m really surprised that most of you seem to support what our government does to its own citizens…

    • east96st - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:20 PM

      drew – The point you seem to missing entirely is it is a team sport. Tim’s a member of the team. The team decided to go as a whole and Tim decided to separate himself from his teammates. Let’s say he has an amazingly good reason. Then why doesn’t his teammates know what it is? Why do they have to wait to read about it on Facebook? If Tim was a man, he would have called a team meeting and stated to the entire team why he felt it was so important for him not to be there. And then he should have been man enough to hear his teammates out if they disagreed. If his reason was compelling and rational enough, I’m sure his teammates would have given him a pass. It’s that he was so cowardly in front of his team that makes this especially nauseating. It was obviously important to the other guys. He should have the stones to address them beforehand and talked it out and make the “sacrifice” of going if that was what the team wanted..

  16. goforthanddie - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:49 PM

    What’s to defend? You can tour the White House like everybody else, and I can think of dozens of people I’d rather meet than the President, regardless who is in the position.

  17. arsement - Jan 23, 2012 at 4:59 PM

    I just lost all respect I had for Tim Thomas. What a loser.

    • csndrew - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:07 PM

      Sneaky aspect of this whole thing: Possible rift in the locker room (privately, not publicly) as some players question why Thomas would do this, and whether he’s putting his own political beliefs ahead of a prestigious team honor.

  18. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:01 PM

    Yes, downthumb me because you have no response. I’ve come to expect nothing less from those who refuse to think for themselves.

  19. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:09 PM

    Just so I’m clear…the stance I’m supposed to have is that refusing to go to the White House is un-American? And Thomas should be vilified for exercising his right to not go?

    Would you prefer it if he were ordered to appear, upon penalty of arrest, in the manner of Fascist governments?

    • solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:13 PM

      Did you just compare Obama to the Nazis?

      Wow, just wow…

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:17 PM

        No. It’s you guys who are getting on Thomas for not going and saying he’s an enemy of the state for not going.

        It’s very close to what Fascists do.

      • solador78 - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:23 PM

        Fascists also burn books but I didn’t see any Canucks at the White House.

      • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:27 PM

        Way to dodge a reply, solador.

  20. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:14 PM

    If you guys lose your rights because the government violates the constitution, all I’ll say is: You supported it.

  21. yettyskills - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:15 PM

    So many American barely pay attention to politics and are clueless buffoons.

    Tim Thomas does pay attention
    Is free to think and free to choose if he wants to bend his values for a PR event

    Which this is
    A PR event for a sitting President

    Get over it fools

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:18 PM


  22. tmjm621 - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:17 PM

    Redneck faggot. Typical boston. Nothings ever good enough outside boston

    • drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:20 PM

      Pretty sure you’d never say that to his face.

    • spokedjackets - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:28 PM

      But your homophobic slur represents where you’re from very well.

    • arsement - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:39 PM

      You have just put yourself in the same light that you obviously dislike in Tim Thomas.

  23. jaybertx - Jan 23, 2012 at 5:39 PM

    If you don’t respect the man, respect the position. Tim should have gone to meet the President of the United States of America no matter who it is.

  24. botlecap - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:17 PM

    yep. it’s a duty and honor thing. it’s like when the president asks you to serve, you say yes. it doesn’t matter who it is or how you disagree.

    the office is doing something pretty special and significant in taking time to congratulate and recognize you on a sports victory (and highlight the hard work and drive it took to accomplish in the hopes of inspiring people to work hard and set goals themselves). you don’t just not go. not like there was any chance obama would have anything even remotely political in his remarks.

    we’ll see what thomas says, but i don’t understand why he couldn’t use the occasion to make a statement immediately after or on fb this evening or whenever. he could have still used the moment to make his point and shown up. if it’s politics, he could have gone, and said after something like:

    “i disagree completely with every policy of this president, but that has nothing to do with hockey or working hard to achieve your goals. i appreciate being invited and am grateful for the once in a lifetime opportunity and i hope this can be an example to kids and everyone else that people who disagree can find ways to come together.”

  25. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:43 PM

    “I believe the Federal government has grown out of control, threatening the Rights, Liberties, and Property of the People.

    This is being done at the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial level. This is in direct opposition to the Constitution and the Founding Fathers vision for the Federal government.

    Because I believe this, today I exercised my right as a Free Citizen, and did not visit the White House. This was not about politics or party, as in my opinion both parties are responsible for the situation we are in as a country. This was about a choice I had to make as an INDIVIDUAL.”

    While he makes a valid point, this is still the wrong time to voice your displeasure. He would not have been visiting the White House as an individual but as a part of a team. By bailing on them he let his team down. This just reflects really poorly on Thomas.

  26. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:45 PM

    @east96: Are you a member of the team? If not, then you have no idea what Thomas’ teammates know or don’t know. You also don’t know what this particular locker room wants from Thomas.

  27. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:47 PM

    @luckywi: Thomas doesn’t owe the media a damn thing.

  28. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:47 PM

    @luckywi: Thomas doesn’t owe the media a damn thing.

  29. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:47 PM

    @luckywi: Thomas doesn’t owe the media a damn thing.

  30. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:47 PM

    @luckywi: Thomas doesn’t owe the media a damn thing.

    • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:52 PM

      Do you think Thomas owes the media a damn thing?

  31. drewsylvania - Jan 23, 2012 at 6:51 PM

    Whoa. Sorry about the spam.

  32. habsman - Jan 23, 2012 at 7:28 PM

    Geeez, even Kaberle went. And he plays for the Habs! (BTW, you can keep him if you want. Please?)

  33. rossco050682 - Jan 23, 2012 at 8:56 PM

    What the hell TT is such a good goalie but now, I don’t know what to think about him. It sucks cus’ I am a sports nut and the current Bruins are such a great team to support. Conversely, TT is a brainwashed fool who has been rewarded greatly for a specialty skill in the entertainment industry (Pro Sports), and he doesn’t understand that the Corporate Capitalist system which he is a part of is the true cause of our current class inequality? I LOVE his goal tending skills, but I just can’t forgive him for being an out of touch buffoon. Honestly if he continues to play well I will enjoy it, but not as much now. Seguin misses meetings yet still has the good sense to be there. TT is bull$h!tting that it’s not about the Democratic party, he is a big contributor to “Freedom Works”. Which is the most ironically named PAC EVER! They hate our Democracy and America. Being from the U.P. I know he was probably raised and influenced by the same idiotic anti-union/racist BS I heard, but is still dumb enough to believe it even with his lucky wealth.

    Hey TT; “We regular people appreciate that the 40 hour work week and the minimum wage and a social safety net. We aren’t all as lucky as you. Get your had out of your a$$ and understand that you don’t have to trust your Government to be an American, you just have to LOVE your country. Either show some respect to US citizens or……..

  34. blomfeld - Jan 23, 2012 at 10:28 PM


    I like Tim Thomas as a hockey player, but snubbing the president like this was very misguided and extremely naive. People should think back to election night in November of 2008 and the situation we were in then. Sure it seemed like a wonderful evening, with Obama claiming the presidency and promising us all a fresh start. In reality however, it was essentially the equivalent of someone being promoted to Captain of the Titanic one hour “after” hitting the iceberg ! The tables were stacked against Obama from the very start and I for one am utterly amazed that we’re even still afloat ! Think what would have happened if government spending had been stopped and all the massive corporations and banks were left to die ungainly deaths on their own ? .. social upheaval ? .. massive unemployment ? .. anarchy ? .. class war ? … at least Obama has tried his best to avert what is probably now inevitable, all the same.

    So I’m sorry Tim Thomas, as you were very “cool” last spring when you gave it to the Sisters and that Italian “tire pumper” … but on this one you’re dead wrong ! If you want to make a statement against “them” then go and call out the members of the Bilderberg Group, the Rothschilds, the Schlumbergs or the Illuminati. Don’t take it out on the decent “well-intentioned” man who is Barack Obama …

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