Oh, Sean Avery. Why must you complicate things not only for yourself but for everybody else? No doubt much of your bad reputation is on the foundation of false beliefs, but there are times where you do not help your own cause. Last night the Connecticut Whale announced that Sean Avery was a healthy scratch for the game for “disciplinary reasons.” I did briefly speak to one person associated with the Whale and I was told the he couldn’t comment about the situation, which tells me that this is not a case of something trivial like Sean Avery coming late to a team meeting; this was the result of something more significant.
Greg Wyshynki of Puck Daddy claims that a source told him that Avery “flat out told” Ken Gernander that he wasn’t going to play. So if true Sean Avery was the one who pulled himself out of the lineup. Either way, Sean Avery is doing absolutely nothing that is a positive step towards getting back to the NHL. Certainly the Rangers will not reward him with a call-up after an incident like this and other teams interested in acquiring him can only be deterred by his name once again coming up in the news for the wrong reasons. Attitude issues aside, if Sean Avery played some great games for the Whale then it would surely increase the likelihood of taking a chance on him.
Nonetheless, it is what it is. I still like Sean Avery in general but pulling off stunts like this does not contribute to a healthy environment for the Whale, who have and need to continue to develop fresh talent for us. If Sean just had a bad night and lost his cool then I’m willing to get over it, but if he plans on keeping this up for even another day then it’s for the best that he is suspended and sent home. If Sather is able to find a trade partner in the mean time then all the better.
If there is some sort of positive that comes from this let it be that we can put into perspective how great Wade Redden has acted. Wade’s a guy whose career was 10 times more significant than Avery’s in his prime, and yet he shows absolutely nothing but class and always comes with his best effort for the Whale. He helps the team on the ice and all of the defensemen on the team have great things to say about him and how he tries to help out. So while Wade was surely a bust of a signing, let us as least thank him for making the best out of the situation and not complaining once about his fate.
And finally, I’m aware of the rumors that Avery spit on a coach, however please realize that they came from an, at the very best, inconsistent source. I will not rule it out until we’re told by someone reputable that it isn’t true, but at the same time let’s also not spread around gossip from someone who is constantly churning out wrong information (he called a Marian Gaborik trade to the Kings at last year’s trading deadline “a done deal,for instance). If something of that nature did in fact happen I would like to believe that at least one other person with more connections than a guy who calls into radio shows would have also heard about it.
UPDATE: According to Darren Dreger the Rangers insist that Avery did not spit on any coach and did not refuse to play. They claim he was sat due to a combination of other matters. I’m not totally sold that Avery refused to play (though I do give him the benefit of the doubt) but I would like to think that if Avery did something as ridiculous as spitting on a coach they would stand up for Ken Gernander and not undermine the incident. As usual, a ridiculous rumor spread by an incompetent source is almost certainly false.