Interesting article about former Golden Gopher and Boston Bruins forward Phil Kessel. You have talented, millionaire athletes telling coaches what they will do and not do. It's a great perspective that's not put out there a lot. Per Score: Kessel denies a rift with the Toronto coaching staff.
Dave Feschuk, Toronto Star – At least, such was the gist of an anecdote Spott shared at a coaches’ clinic at which he was a guest speaker last month, this according to interviews with three minor-hockey coaches who were in attendance.
“Spotter said that when he went to Phil (with the breakout play), Phil said, I’m not doing it,” said one of the attendees, a former professional player.
Said another: “Spott was saying (that) these are the things I’ve got to deal with now that I’ve never had to deal with. In the AHL (where Spott coached last season with the Toronto Marlies), when you’re the coach what you say goes. Whereas now that I’m here (in the NHL), I’ve got a guy telling me: No. I’m not going to do that.”
The 46-year-old Spott told the group that he made Carlyle aware of the pushback he’d received from Kessel, 26, who signed an eight-year contract extension worth about $64 million last season.
“Spott said Carlyle’s attitude was that we’re fired before (Kessel is) out of here, the hierarchy doesn’t want to deal with Phil. He scores 30 (goals) a year and that’s all they want,” said one of the attendees. “(Spott said) Phil hates coaches. He hates Randy. He hates me and I don’t even know him yet.”