Photo: Montreal Canadiens
Alex Semin made his debut in a Montreal Canadiens jersey today (ew #13) after signing a one-year, $1.1-million deal in late July. But just as with his career in Washington, controversy continues to dog Semin.
While speaking to the Raleigh Sports Club on Wednesday night, Carolina Hurricanes President Don Waddell explained why the team bought Semin out of the remaining three years of his five-year, $35-million extension. And it’s vicious.
“Semin was a very top-end player in the league when the game was played at a slower pace,” Waddell said. “It’s now played at such a high level if you can’t skate it’s hard to compete. Alex lost a step and he tried to play on the outside too much because he didn’t have the speed.
“And then he didn’t buy into the culture that our coach (Bill Peters) was trying to get in the locker room. When you go to practice and you have 22 guys doing things the way the coach wants and one who doesn’t, it usually doesn’t end well. … In simple terms, we paid him $14 million to go away.”
That noise you hear is Waddell running Semin over with his figurative bus and then backing up and running over him again.
These statements come four years after Matt Bradley told a Canadian radio station that Semin “just doesn’t care.”
“When you’ve got a guy like that, you need him to be your best player, or one of your best players, and when he doesn’t show up, you almost get the sense that he wants to be back in Russia,” Bradley said. “That’s tough to win when you’ve got a guy like that who’s supposed to be your best player not being your best player, or one of your best players.”
Boy, will this be an interesting season for Sasha Minor.
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