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Calgary Flames

Sutter Shrugs Off Suggestions He’s Sucking Flames’ Joy Through Negativity

After Jonathan Huberdeau’s agent Allan Walsh tweeted a shot at Calgary Flames head coach Darryl Sutter, the bench boss responded the comment is irrelevant in the locker-room.



Calgary Flames head coach Darryl Sutter shrugged off the idea that he’s creating a joyless, negative environment for his players. 

Responding on Friday afternoon to questions about the viral tweet from Jonathan Huberdeau’s agent Allan Walsh after Thursday’s loss to the Detroit Red Wings, Sutter said those words were irrelevant in the locker-room. 

“Social media and what anyone says doesn't affect a locker-room — ever. Ever,” Sutter told reporters. "When you've got a tight group, you keep it tight."

And Sutter was confident that’s what the Flames room is — something the players suggested later as well. 

“It is,” he said, suggesting it wasn’t that way when he arrived a couple of years ago now. “We’ve worked really hard at it and we continue to.

“I think it was fairly well talked about that it wasn’t (before). There (were) groups in the group.”

While there is little doubt the group of players is tight, repeatedly stating they have each others’ backs, there’s no way to confirm Walsh’s tweet, which is open to interpretation. 

Sutter says there’s a quiet but strong leadership group. 

This vote of confidence came less than 24 hours after voicing concern about it at times throughout the year. 

When asked about Huberdeau’s happiness, Sutter was brief and tactful. 

“I think he’d certainly like to be putting more numbers up, but even last night, he told me on the bench he’s playing good,” Sutter said. “That’s good for me, too. That’s what it’s about. 

“I just think there is a period of adjustment. When does that kick in? I’m not a genius on that. He’s a good player.”

As for joy? Sutter suggests he agrees it’s an important element. That cocktail, he suggests, comes from youthful energy and veterans with a businesslike approach. 

“I think it’s really important,” Sutter said. 

As for doing the same thing over and over again, Sutter mixed up his defence partners. 

Take that, Walsh. 

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