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Bruins GM met with Tim Thomas about Facebook postings

Feb 20, 2012, 5:57 PM EST

Tim Thomas Getty Images

Curious bit of information twice mentioned by CBC’s Elliotte Friedman: Boston Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli reportedly met with goalie Tim Thomas after his most recent Facebook posting.

The first mention occurred on Hockey Night in Canada’s “Hotstove” segment:

“Peter Chiarelli met with Tim Thomas after the most recent Facebook posting and he didn’t say ‘You can’t do it,’ but he did say to him ‘You can’t expect that if you’re going to make statements on your Facebook page — political statements — that people aren’t going to ask you about them.’

You haven’t seen anything since that conversation, I don’t know if it will continue, the Bruins don’t think they have to say stop, but they have told him if you’re gonna do it, you’re gonna have to expect the media queries.”

Technically, Thomas hasn’t posted anything definitively political since Feb. 8…but I stress the word “technically.” He posted a Ronald Reagan quote about minimal government authority on Feb. 10, a Calvin Coolidge quote about sport in Feb. 13 and, most recently, a quote from Henry Morgenthau, Jr. entitled “We’re repeating history”.

So it’s not like he’s laid off the rhetoric entirely.

Friedman then brought up the Chiarelli/Thomas summit again in his most recent 30 Thoughts column:

Chiarelli met with Tim Thomas after the Conn Smythe winner’s most recent political Facebook posting. He didn’t say to stop, but did explain that you can’t expect the media not to ask about it. Thomas is adamant he shouldn’t have to discuss his personal beliefs, but it’s not that simple.

Just a quick timeline here — on May 26, 2006, Chiarelli became Boston’s GM.

On Sept 26, 2006, Facebook expanded membership to the public (well, everyone of age 13 or older with a valid email address.)

My point: Upon taking the gig, I doubt Chiarelli imagined he’d one day have discussions with players about ramifications of their politically-charged wall postings.

  1. taytay099 - Feb 20, 2012 at 6:40 PM

    If he had gone to the White House then no one would think twice about these quotes he’s posting. Does he really expect people not to ask him questions now?

    • stakex - Feb 20, 2012 at 8:58 PM

      Exactly.

      I don’t care who you are, when you get an invite to meet the President… you go. It does not matter who the president is, or if you share his political views. Its showing respect to the office of the President. I despised Bush, but if I was ever invited to meet him I would have done it without hesitation. Hell, do you honestly think all the athletes that have gone to the White House over the years have agreed with the President in office at the time? Hell no.

      Hes absolutely free to believe what ever he wants (no matter how misguided) and no one would have ever cared. When Thomas decided to snub the president however, he opened himself up to a lot of questions about his political leanings. He now has to accept that, and if he can’t handle it he needs to just stop making his political beliefs public.

  2. dolanster - Feb 20, 2012 at 6:50 PM

    Hey Tim, love you man. Here’s some free advice: STFU for a while. Let’s win some games.

  3. danphipps01 - Feb 20, 2012 at 7:10 PM

    Good on him. Thomas’ behaviour is annoying and burdensome for everyone in the organization and while I’m sure Chiarelli recognizes telling him to stop would only result in yet another weird and rambling speech about how Americans have the right to say whatever the hell they want at all times, telling him it’s petulant and stupid to get pissy when people ask him about it is wise. Hopefully Thomas will take knowing that his GM isn’t going to defend him from the journalists as a sign that it’s probably time to start focusing on stopping the puck instead of some evil socialist menace or something.

  4. vshehane - Feb 20, 2012 at 7:15 PM

    Go Tim. Say whatever you like. We still have freedom of speech and you owe no one an explanation.

    • spiffy53 - Feb 20, 2012 at 7:31 PM

      do us a favor. go into work tommorrow and tell everyone exactly what you think of them. you have freedom of speech right? as someone who WORKS for an organization, you need to be mindful that you represent them at all times.

  5. crazemastercraze - Feb 20, 2012 at 7:36 PM

    like an adult speaking to a clueless child….

  6. neelymessier - Feb 20, 2012 at 7:37 PM

    Shilling was even worse, using the media attention of playoff and ws victories as his podium. Everyone is entitled to their opinions. When one decides to be paid millions to play a kid’s game, one is not there to promote religion or politics, the two subjects we generally are trying to escape through our involvement with hockey.

    • paperlions - Feb 21, 2012 at 8:18 AM

      What Shilling never did was have a 1-sided conversation by refusing to answer questions. When he spouted off political stuff, he backed it up with why he thought what he thought….if you if disagree with him, you have to respect the fact that he wouldn’t run away from the discussion.

  7. dolanster - Feb 20, 2012 at 7:46 PM

    If he can make it another 44 days then the Red Sox will be the soap opera that everyone in Boston cares about. Hard for them now with no Patriots, no Sox, sucking Celtics. All attention is on the Bs. That will end soon.

  8. Scott - Feb 20, 2012 at 8:51 PM

    So many angles to this story. Perhaps the most objectionable angle is Thomas using his pro athlete platform for disseminating political views, then playing the “I’m a private citizen” card when the media comes knocking. You can’t have it both ways. HIs platform of tens of thousand Facebook fans came by way of of his Boston Bruin heroics. He can’t separate the two no matter how hard he tries. Either he limits his ministrations to friends and family at the backyard barbecue or accepts that he’s a public figure speaking in a public forum. Seriously, how hard is this to understand?

    Not sure if Thomas’ behavior is hypocritical or cowardly. Perhaps it’s a bit of both. Either way, too bad, because I used to be a Tim Thomas fan.

  9. pickelback - Feb 20, 2012 at 9:08 PM

    Timmy T- great hockey goalie, naive on political, well,…just about anything. Stick with what you know, buddy…

  10. stakex - Feb 20, 2012 at 9:17 PM

    It was bad enough when Thomas disrespected the office of the president (not even Obama, but the office itself), but to follow that up by posting a Martin Niemöller quote that was intended to compare the current administration to the Nazi’s was nothing short of idiotic. Not only should the team have had a talk with him, but they should have told him to zip it the hell up.

    Thomas is free to believe what ever he wants to. This is America after all, even if people like Thomas seem to have little respect for it anymore. However when hes using his fame and position with the Boston Bruins as a soap box to distribute radical views he has to awnser for that and the team has ever right to tell him to shut up.

  11. mtheparrothead - Feb 20, 2012 at 9:26 PM

    So Thomas believes what he believes. Who cares. If you don’t like him don’t read his Facebook posts. Meanwhile merryweather and James Harrison speak true ignorance and no one says boo.

    • jerseydevi1 - Feb 21, 2012 at 10:01 AM

      Arguably the most intelligent comment on the subject yet. To me it’s like the people way people complain about things on the radio or tv. Change the channel or station. Same thing here. DON’T READ HIS POSTS if you don’t like it. Are you reading it because you want to be upset or offended? I’m more offended by the blatant misuse of the language by most of these athletes ten I am by their political ideals.

      Good for you, Tim Thomas. Don’t let them slow you down. Everyone is entitled to their opinion whether The Public likes it or not.

  12. seaner44 - Feb 21, 2012 at 3:48 AM

    Facebook is public unless you make your profile private. If you are repping a brand (like tim thomas is) then you need to either deal with people and media disecting your posts or you need to shut up.

  13. poonsmashinasham - Feb 21, 2012 at 6:50 AM

    typical nazi commie. this guy is out of control. he needs to b put in the electric chair for being anti-american. usa and soup can army for life!

  14. bcjim - Feb 21, 2012 at 7:05 AM

    @Scott…I used to not be a fan, now I am.

    • hockeyflow33 - Feb 21, 2012 at 4:17 PM

      Why? Besides obviously being a pink hat, what exactly do you know about any of their personal lives?

      • bcjim - Feb 22, 2012 at 12:25 PM

        Lots of confusion about the political spectrum and who fits where, on this db. Are you a HS dropout by any chance?

  15. bostonhasrealhockey - Feb 21, 2012 at 7:58 AM

    Can we play hockey now? And possibly win a damn game or two.

  16. charbish - Feb 21, 2012 at 5:28 PM

    ACTUALLY—if Thomas had posted global warming, pro-gay agenda, pro-abortion (aka women’s right to ‘choose’), or any other pro-left items………..Chiarelli wouldn’t be meeting with Thomas. NOR do I believe the media would be pressing him about the comments. PRAISING him, but not PRESSING him. This is the media environment we live in. Left, YES, right, NO. Tom Brady got criticized in MA when he was invited to the Bush State of the Union address many moons ago because…..IT WAS BUSH. Theo Epstein didn’t go to the…..BUSH White House and I don’t remember fallout about that. Left, YES, right……not in Massachusetts, anyway.

  17. southernhockey - Feb 21, 2012 at 5:35 PM

    ACTUALLY—if Thomas had posted global warming, pro-gay agenda, pro-abortion (aka women’s right to ‘choose’), or any other pro-left items………..Chiarelli wouldn’t be meeting with Thomas. NOR do I believe the media would be pressing him about the comments. PRAISING him, but not PRESSING him. This is the media environment we live in. Left, YES, right, NO. Tom Brady got criticized in MA when he was invited to the Bush State of the Union address many moons ago because…..IT WAS BUSH. Theo Epstein didn’t go to the…..BUSH White House and I don’t remember fallout about that. Left, YES, right……not in Massachusetts, anyway.

    • paddles57 - Feb 27, 2012 at 5:34 PM

      Theo never made it into a political issue-Thomas did. Big difference!

  18. southernhockey - Feb 21, 2012 at 5:37 PM

    RE: I don’t care who you are, when you get an invite to meet the President… you go. It does not matter who the president is, or if you share his political views. Its showing respect to the office of the President. I despised Bush, but if I was ever invited to meet him I would have done it without hesitation. Hell, do you honestly think all the athletes that have gone to the White House over the years have agreed with the President in office at the time? Hell no.

    There are a lot who have NOT when it was your despised Bush. You wouldn’t have gone either. Call them all cowards, then.

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