Brent Sutter saw the results of the NHLPA/CBC player poll.
The Calgary Flames head coach wants a re-count.
He wasn’t insulted by the fact he took 10% of the vote and finished fourth in the category of coach for which players would least like to play.
Or that he claimed 6% as the most demanding bench boss.
“I’m disappointed I wasn’t No. 1,” Sutter said with a laugh Tuesday afternoon. “I don’t really get caught up into it.
“I’ve been on the other side where I’ve voted on that stuff and put ballots in. Anybody who has played, we all know how that works as players.
“It’s irrelevant. It really is.”
Sutter filled out those forms as a player and knows they aren’t taken too seriously. He would jot his own coach’s name down — legendary Al Arbour with the New York Islanders — just to get him ranked.
Yet he would play for the former Isles boss any day.
“Absolutely — in a New York second,” Sutter said.
His players feel the same way about him.
“He’s very fair,” said Flames winger Alex Tanguay.
“As far as demanding, you know what to expect from him.
“As a player, you like to know exactly what your coach is demanding of you and what he’s asking of you.
“I’ve talked to some guys in New Jersey, and they all have good comments (about Sutter).”
Sutter is in his second year with the Flames and coached two years previously with the New Jersey Devils.
“Certainly he’s a demanding coach,” said Flames forward David Moss.
“You’re expected to play the game a certain way.
“How you build a good, solid team is by demanding things from guys.
“I don’t think that’s a bad thing.”
No piling on
David Moss was enjoying himself in Las Vegas while his cousin Phil Kessel was suffering the indignity of being picked last in the NHL all-star fantasy draft over the weekend.
“I felt so bad for him —
I saw it on TV,” said the Flames winger, who caught the highlights on the tube later.
“I haven’t talked to him at all. I figured enough people are bugging him. I’ll wait a few days.”
But Moss doesn’t think Kessel was really bothered about his spot in the selections. Not only did he earn US$20,000 for charity, but he drove home a new car, as well.
“It’s good to have the money for the charity. I would take being picked last in the all-star game — I know that. But any situation you’re in, it probably never feels great to be picked last,” Moss said. “But it’s the all-star game, and they kind of had fun with it.
“You’re one of the top 40 guys in the league. That’s a compliment.”
Moss knows his cousin handles whatever is thrown at him in life with the same coolness.
“He’s the type of guy not much bugs him. He’s pretty laid back. It’s obviously an uncomfortable feeling — everyone’s on the stage looking at you. You’re sitting there by yourself.
“But it probably didn’t affect him too much.”
He didn’t even get dressed up for the proceedings.
“I think he was the only guy up there who wasn’t wearing a tie, and his hair wasn’t combed either,” Moss said with a grin. “But that’s nothing new.”
Nick’s no dummy
Predators head coach Barry Trotz figured captain Nicklas Lidstrom had more than one reason to pick Shea Weber with his fourth pick in the NHL all-star fantasy draft.
“He didn’t want to get hit with one of his shots from the point — he sees him enough in Detroit,” Trotz said. “Nick’s a smart man. He’s going to be in the Hall of Fame, so he knows something.”
He knows what a treat it is to play with a young star like Weber, which is why he chose to suit up alongside him on the blueline for the game Sunday.
“It was special,” Weber said. “If there was one guy I wanted to play with going there, it was him. He’s one of the best defencemen, if not the best defenceman to ever play the game. It was definitely something I’ll never forget.”
Weber and Lidstrom were a combined plus-13 in the game that saw 10 goals scored against their team.
If the Flames’ 6-foot-5 netminder Henrik Karlsson is considered the Calgary Tower, the one-two punch in the Nashville Predators net can only be called the Twin Towers.
Pekka Rinne, at 6-foot-5,
and Anders Lindback, at 6-foot-6, form the tallest goaltending tandem in the league.
“It’s funny. When (Rinne) first got hurt and we called up Mark Dekaniche, who’s 6-foot-2, and we put him into the net, we were going, ‘Boy, there’s a lot of net there,’ ” Predatrs head coach Barry Trotz said.
“You get used to those two big guys in the net. It’s just square footage.”
Rinne has gone 17-13-4 with a .929 save percentage and a 2.11 goals-against average this season.
Lindback is 10-4-2 with a .915 save percentage and a 2.58 GAA.
That’s pretty impressive numbers for a team that relies on strong goaltending to stay competitive.
“They’re both good goalies,” Trotz said. “They’re good athletes, and they’re good people, and they should have good futures.”