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Rangers fans help reunite Del Zotto with his #1 fan/friend

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  • Rangers fans help reunite Del Zotto with his #1 fan/friend

    Sometimes it's easy to forget how a trade often uproots a player from his family and the friends he has made in the city he has called home for an extended period of time.

    That was the case Jan. 22 when the New York Rangers traded 23-year old defenseman Michael Del Zotto to the Nashville Predators for defenseman Kevin Klein. Single, Del Zotto didn't have to move his family, but he was going to have to leave behind someone who in his four years in New York had become not only his biggest fan but one of his best friends.

    A diehard fan from Rockland County, N.Y., 12-year old Liam Traynor lives with cerebral palsy and met Del Zotto through the Garden Of Dreams Foundation in January 2010.

    The two have been close friends since.


    The bond they have formed is so strong that when Rangers fans found out Del Zotto was traded they flooded Liam's Twitter account, saying they were thinking of him and encouraging him to "hang in there."

    One Rangers fan took his compassion a step further and launched a website called "Get Liam To Nashville" ( in an effort to reunite him and Del Zotto at a Predators game; the Rangers don't play the Predators in New York again this season.

    The goal was to have Traynor and his mom, Deborah, travel to Nashville to see Del Zotto and watch the Predators play the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday. In one month, the fundraising website raised enough money to cover ticket costs, round-trip airfare, hotel reservations and full-size SUV rental for Traynor and his family. As if that wasn't enough, the Predators stepped in and made sure the family had tickets for the Predators' 2-1 loss Thursday to the St. Louis Blues, reuniting Traynor and Del Zotto afterward in the dressing room. ... 3Atopheads

    I love to hear stories like this - some of the players are just awesome, you can't help but appreciate what they do off the ice, for their community. And what can be said about Hockey fans! Wow!

  • #2
    Re: Rangers fans help reunite Del Zotto with his #1 fan/frie

    Holy! That's such a heartwarming story :) Respect level for Del Zotto just went through the roof. Really wish we'd traded for him. Heard a story the other day about Kyle Turris who was buying groceries when he heard a lady's coworkers wishing her a happy birthday. He brought his purchases out to his car, then went back in, bought flowers, and gave them to the lady and wished her a happy birthday :)


    • #3
      Re: Rangers fans help reunite Del Zotto with his #1 fan/frie

      Doesn't take much to brighten someone's day. :) A small gesture here & there.