It has been said that by its very nature, history is always a one-sided account.
But can you really make memories of a hockey star disappear?
The New York Islanders are attempting to find out when it comes to franchise legend Pat LaFontaine. The NHL club has covered up his brilliant career as if it didn't happen, at least on Long Island.
As the Islanders' 40th anniversary season in the National Hockey League winds down, LaFontaine, a huge star with the team from 1983-1991, has all but been forgotten by the team, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Evidence of a career camouflage is overwhelming.
Although the team plays a nostalgic video before each game on the Nassau Coliseum scoreboard, you won't see any images of LaFontaine.
Moreover, the Islanders have left him out of the club's Hall of Fame, despite the fact he entered the Pro Hockey Hall of Fame nine years ago.
LaFontaine was also left off 42 special historic game tickets that highlighted special moments in franchise history.
If that wasn't enough, in 2008, the Islanders wouldn't honor a credential request by then Anaheim GM Brian Burke for the former star.
Why would the Islanders attempt to suppress LaFontaine's career?
It appears the NHL team's owner Charles Wang is still bitter over LaFontaine's 40-day run as his unpaid senior advisor. That job ended in July 2006, when he resigned after Wang fired the team's GM Neil Smith and handed the the job to Garth Snow, the Isles backup goaltender at the time. LaFontaine disagreed with the decision and quit out of loyalty to Smith.
Mike Milbury, a former Islanders GM now with NBC, defended the Islanders owner. "Pat ran for the hills. Pat ran for cover," Milbury told the Wall Street Journal. "It was cowardly, and it was terrible. And if Charles was [ticked], I wouldn't blame him in the least."
For what it's worth, LaFontaine claims he called Wang twice in 2006, attempting to patch things up, only to have the owner never return his messages.
LaFontaine is arguably the greatest American hockey player of all time. The St. Louis-born center's 1.17 points per game is tops for USA-born hockey players.
The Islanders are next to last in the 30-team NHL in terms of attendance and have won just two playoff series in the past 25 years. Needless to say, they could use some better players and an island full of good karma.
-- Follow Ben Maller on Twitter @BenMaller.
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