Flames Player Takes Swipe At Ex-Coach Darryl Sutter

The Calgary Flames lost their third straight as a tough start to the season continues. But before Tuesday's game, while discussing the team's struggles thus far, defenceman Nikita Zadorov made some comments that might have ruffled some feathers, while also taking a shot at the team's former coach, Darryl Sutter. 

After blaming the team's slow start on players not really working together at this point, but rather playing as "individuals", Zadorov was asked if this isn't the same conversation that was being had last season. 

Well, last season was different. It was Darryl. Now there's no Darryl, so there's no excuses. 

You guys don't like hard coaches, you don't like soft coaches, you don't like good coaches? I mean, you come and play hard and leave everything on the ice, I think that's how simple it is.

For one, forward Nazem Kadri took issue with Zadorov's comments, disagreeing that they're not all playing as a team. 

“Of course, everyone’s trying to make plays, and sometimes I think when you’re down in games, you obviously have to be a little more risky, and that’s kind of bitten us a few times," said Kadri before Tuesday night's game. "We understand how to manage things and obviously, it’s a work in progress. A lot of things have been different this year, and sometimes it takes a little time to adjust."

After the latest loss, defenseman Mackenzie Weegar added, "The only guys that are going to get us out of this rut are the 20 guys that are in this room. We've got to work hard. I've said this all along. We've got the compete, we've got the effort in here, we've got the guys. We're just in a bit of a slump; it came early. I believe we can get out of it."

The Flames are now 2-4-1 in their first seven games of the season, not the way they wanted to follow up their disappointing 2022-23 season, in which they missed the playoffs. 

Somewhere, Darryl Sutter might be having the last laugh.  

Photo: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports