The Calgary Flames were embroiled in a little drama over the weekend when comments made by head coach Darryl Sutter caught the attention of many members of the media and the attention of the Calgary Flames fan base as well.
Sutter, who has always been known as a difficult man to please behind the bench and perhaps an even more difficult man to play for, was asked about an upcoming milestone for one of his star players. That star player was Johnny Gaudreau and the major milestone that he had coming up was his 500th career game in the National Hockey League. Now that would be a major moment in the career of any player that reaches the plateau, but when he was asked to share his feelings on the moment Sutter effectively pooped all over it.
"Hopefully he has more energy than his 499th game," said Sutter in comments reported on Saturday.
Now it is possible that Sutter had been merely kidding around and was in a joking mood, something he is most definitely not known for, but when the video of his comments was released there was no doubt that he was voicing his clear displeasure with the player and was in no way interested in hearing about his personal milestones.
This caused a huge amount of chatter on social media and I have to admit it seems like the majority of people who responded, and who were from the Calgary area, appeared to largely support the head coach on this one. As you would expect word of this eventually reached the ears of Johnny Gaudreau and he has now responded to the comments made by his head coach.
I may be reading too much into his response, but it certainly sounded to me like there may have been a little snark here on the part of Gaudreau. If that was indeed the case I can't really blame him after being publicly embarrassed in such a fashion, but either way he was clearly not happy.
"I’ve been playing hockey for 24/25 years now and I know when I’ve been playing well and when I haven’t," Gaudreau told reporters over the weekend.
Gaudreau has often been the subject of much trade speculation, especially over the last year or so, and it will be very interesting to see where the relationship between these two goes from here.