During a visit to the city on Wednesday to talk with team officials, Horton, his wife Tammy, 5-year-old son Dylan and 15-month-old Zach, joined Blue Jackets director of hockey operations John Davidson on a trip to the Columbus Zoo.
"They brought out all the baby animals. We got to see a big cheetah, they brought him out of the cage and it was pretty cool," Horton said with a laugh. "Not too many people get to do that."
Dylan loves penguins. So the zoo brought one out so he could pet it. The family was won over. "It was unbelievable," Davidson said.
"They brought a penguin out and the little guy was holding a penguin! I even went over and gave him a little pet."
Horton said he felt at home everywhere he went around Ohio's capital city. "This is the place I wanted to be,'' he said. "It feels like home."
Cute animals? Nathan Horton decided that he wanted to play for the Columbus Blue Jackets (a team that most casual fans dont even know exists) because the zoo downtown has cute animals? That has to be a friggin joke.
So, he doesnt care about competing for a Stanley Cup or playing for a team with a great tradition and rich history. To him, it came down to the fact that the zoo had cute animals. That is just friggin sad.
Like it or not, this is going to be a part of Nathan Horton's legacy. Sure, he scored some clutch playoff goals for the Bruins and sure, he was a staple on their top line for two Stanley Cup Final appearances. But when people talk about why Nathan Horton left the Bruins, the story that will go like this: he became a free agent and decided that he wanted to play in a more "quiet" city and he chose the Columbus Blue Jackets because he liked the animals at the Columbus Zoo.
That is just a sad, pathetic way to end your career in Boston. And its a story that most people wouldnt want attached to their name, not that anyone will retell this story after today anyway. I mean, the guy is a friggin Columbus Blue Jacket now. Who the hell cares about that team?