We celebrated when Mikael Samuelsson signed a contract earlier this month to re-assimilate into the Borg in Detroit. The Red Wings are, after all, going to be featured on HBO’s 24/7, and something tells us that Samuelsson’s brutal honesty will make his interviews indispensable segments of the program.
If you don’t share our excitement, perhaps you need an example of this brutal honesty. Look no further than a recent interview Samuelsson did with Ronnie Johansson of HockeySvierge.Se, which can be found in the original Swedish here and originally translated by Canucks Army here. During the chat, the former Canuck made it clear that he wasn’t a fan of the Canucks’ front office:
Disappointed is not the right word, but I liked it a lot in Vancouver. I had a pretty significant injury my second season in Vancouver when I torn (something I can’t translate) in my groin. The rehab was going well and I felt good in camp, but when the season was about to start the leg didn’t work.
Looking back at it now, it might have been good to be traded, I got extra time to rehab and come back fully fit. I liked it a lot in Florida, but it was tough leaving the Sedins, Edler and the other guys up in Vancouver. I didn’t think very highly of management, so in that way I didn’t mind.
This is definitely going to be fuel for the critics of Mike Gillis and Alain Vigneault, who came under some serious heat last year for their handling of a few players, namely Cody “God’s son” Hodgson. But, even if you’re not one of those critics, it shouldn’t surprise that Samuelsson doesn’t harbour warm feelings towards Gillis and friends.
Frankly, while the Canucks’ front office got a lot of heat in April for the early-season trade that sent Samuelsson and Marco Sturm to Florida for David Booth, they didn’t get as much as they deserved back in October. Granted, any trade is an inconvenience, but that one seemed more inconsiderate than most.
We noted Sturm’s disappointment after watching his first interview as a Panther. Here’s what we wrote then:
That’s a creaky grin Sturm is sporting, especially when he says it was “still early in the season.” I’m no psychologist, but I’d hazard a guess that he’s more than a little choked.
He has every reason to be. Unmentioned amidst all the excitement of this weekend is the fact that Sturm signed a free agent contract with the Canucks to play here for a year, and was beyond excited to be here. He moved his family, he enrolled his five-year-old and seven-year-old children into school, and he settled in for a year in Vancouver.
Instead, his one-year deal became a raw deal when he was traded six games into the season. That’s a kick in the teeth.
Truth is that, while Samuelsson spent another two years in Vancouver, he too likely made some family preparations for the final year of his free agent deal that likely seemed like a huge waste of time when he was shown the door six games in.
And while I’m not suggesting Samuelsson’s comments are simply raw grapes from the trade — his treatment didn’t always make sense, especially compared to former linemate Mason Raymond, for instance — I’m definitely suggesting the way things ended is a part of it. Consider that Samuelsson’s amusingly brutal honesty first came to light after he was left off the 2010 Swedish Olympic team and responded by telling reporters Team Sweden could go [do intercourse to] themselves.
That makes the Canucks the second hockey operation he’s torched, and when it comes down to it, the Canucks made the same mistake that Team Sweden did: they cast Samuelsson aside. And considering what Samuelsson said the last time this happened, Canucks’ management got off lucky — these comments are basically a Mikael Samuelsson birthday card.
Samuelsson also gave his opinion on the turning point of the Canucks’ series with the Boston Bruins, and he thinks things began to turn in Boston’s favour a little earlier than most.
Me, myself was in the press box during those games, but it probably wasn’t very good that (Alexandre) Burrows bit Patrice Bergeron in the finger in the first game. After that, Boston was angry. You might say that was the wrong team to fire up. They play a very physical game and I thought it would’ve been better to let the bear sleep, if you know what I mean.
Fair point. We know that Samuelsson was one of the first advocates of the Canucks’ Zen style that season, a style they got away from in the playoffs. Biting an opponent seems at odds with his ethos. In Samuelsson’s world, only comments, not players, should be biting.
Be sure to read the Canucks Army translation for a few more very honest statements and Samuelsson-isms.Tags: Angry Samuelsson, Cody Hodgson, Gillis, hey remember marco sturm, Mikael Samuelsson, samuelsson is brutally honest, swedish translations