"I was trying for some fair compensation in moving to Texas, and was getting little-to-no response due to market conditions, and, I suppose, based on what I was offering in return," Klein said of his decision to spurn the Lone Star State.
"I really like the poetics of the city name of Fallon and how it relates to my franchise's history. I have no illusions, allusions, or delusions that my team will be successful in 2002, and I like that the fact that my team name mirrors that sentiment. If Melville was writing in the 21st century, I'm sure he'd set a story in Fallon," Klein stated.
Fallon is a town of 6400 located an hour east of Reno and an hour northeast of Carson City in western Nevada. The town is well known in the military, as it is home to the Fallon U.S. Naval Air Station, which currently serves as the Top Gun school for naval aviators.
"The nickname 'Ice Men' is partly who I am, and part homage to one of our Summer League founders," Klein explained. "We refer to Chris in our league as Maverick, mostly for his GM moves. I think I am the opposite of him as a GM, much more Kazanski than Pete Mitchell -- I rarely take gambles, usually going for the safe options in the draft and in trades, hoping to wear down my opponents with icy, steady play and solid, rarely spectacular, talent. I am not flashy like Top Gun's Maverick, I spend my entire Draft Notes cautioning my fellow GM's that their moves are dangerous, and, unfortunately, I don't get the glory in the end like Maverick" said Klein, who, despite being recognized as one of the league's best each season, has yet to bring home a Spit Cup, the trophy awarded to the SL's playoff champion.
"The homage part of the nickname is related to SL founding member Brian Boice, now a Lieutenant Junior Grade in the US Navy. Lt. Boice is a hero to me, serving our country in a time of war, ready to act as a protector of our collective freedoms and values. As a naval aviator, Brian aspires to go to Fallon. And interestingly enough, he categorizes himself much more as Ice than Mav in the cockpit," said Klein. He later added, "I have promised Brian that if he dies in the service, I'll name my team after him the following year, except if he dies in a fit of Tailhook-type debauchery. If that happens, I think it'll be a gametime decision about the following season's name."
In a closed-door meeting with his staff, Klein was overheard telling ASPs 1st and 3rd Base Coaches Justin and Fletcher Klein, "You two characters are going to Top Gun."
Though Klein has expressed uncertainty regarding 2002 success, the Fallon Chamber of Commerce thinks the Ice Men do have a good chance to bring home the Spit Cup in 2002, as evidenced by their ordering 10,000 tons of ticker tape. Fallon Base Commander Mike "Viper" Metcalf was a little more tepid in his predictions, saying, "They'll win the Cup, but only if they get Barry Bonds. And as long as (Klein) doesn't break every major rule of engagement."