Don Cherry on NHL Players in the KHL

As long as NHL lockout negotiations has the NHL and the NHLPA fighting like an old married couple, there is no Coach’s Corner for Don Cherry to let people know that Cherry is upset about stuff Don Cherry doesn’t like.

So, like people with strong opinions tend to do, Cherry took to twitter to express his feelings on the NHL lockout, as well as the other things on his mind… such as the ever-increasing rate of NHL players signing with the KHL.

Cherry has a very set vision for the way that the NHL should be and a set criteria for what is considered the “best type of hockey player.” On twitter, Cherry recently explained “Don Cherry ‏@CoachsCornerCBC: “In baseball it’s an eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth, old time. Just the way hockey used to be…til the timid, left wing, bleeding hearts took control.”

Don Cherry
(Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE)

Often, to Cherry, Europeans are cut whether or not they fit the bill. Lately, both European and North America players are on the ‘bad’ list. Cherry made it clear that the players who have chosen to sign contracts in Europe instead of staying in North America to stand with the NHLPA are doing a disservice to the game. Cherry told the Montreal Gazette:

“I’m not happy with those players, to tell you the truth. You cannot go over on a vacation, and that’s what they’re over there for. They’re not there to, let us say, make money — they can’t make money because of the insurance (cost). They’re over there to keep in shape? What, are you kidding? In the Ice Follies over there, to keep in shape? They’d be better off scrimmaging here. They’re over there having a good time.”

Cherry continued…

For the sake of solidarity, they should be here fighting the good fight. But worst of all, they’re taking jobs from sluggos like me, know what I mean? I know a good guy who played (junior) for me in Mississauga, Danny Rudisuela. The last lockout, he was all set to go over, he really counted on it, and then they had the lockout and see ya later. Not only are they now taking Canadian jobs that could go over there, they’re taking European jobs. To me, that’s very selfish and I don’t believe in it.”

Guy LafleurHenrik Zetterberg and Ilya Bryzgalov have told the media that there is a chance that some players might not return to the NHL when and if the season gets underway. Zetterberg and Brygalov both cited Russian players as the most likely to stay with the KHL for financial reasons.
…To which Cherry responded:
Don Cherry ‏@CoachsCornerCBC: “I see Guy Lafleur spoke out about the Europeans who might like to stay in the KHL. He said “let them stay there. It will make more room for the players from Quebec and North America. As a supporter and former player I do not care for players who want to stay in Europe. Let them.”

SB Nation compiled a complete list of players who have signed overseas. The list is long and updated daily. If they don’t come back, the NHL is going to have an NFL replacement referee situation. Only with players.

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