Crawford skated Ribeiro hard after the morning skate in
what clearly was a message skate.
GM Joe Nieuwendyksaid
he backs his coach.
“We have team rules and we have a schedule,
and players need to respect that,” Nieuwendyk said. “We talked about
it and it’s a decision that I feel is correct.”
This is the first time in four seasons that Mike Ribeiro has had any
such issue in Dallas, although he had a reputation of being a bit of
problem child while with the Montreal
Canadiens. Their issues with him led the team to trade Ribeiro to
Dallas in what could be the most one-sided traded of all time (unless
the Habs seriously thought Janne Niinnimaa was of the same caliber as
Still, it’s just a missed meeting and it’s obvious that
Crawford is sending a message that despite the Stars missing the
playoffs and basically playing for pride at this point, his team will
not slack off the rest of the season.
As Nieuwendyk and Crawford
look to the future and what they want their team to be, it’s a
possibility that Mike Ribeiro doesn’t fit into those plans. His skill
set, while magical at times, is not the approach that Crawford preaches.
Ribeiro likes to slow the game down, go at his own pace while Crawford
wants an intense and uptempo approach.
Could this be the first
step in Ribeiro being traded this summer? It’s possible. Certainly not a great impression your coach to have headed into the offseason.
Here are the 10 oldest players to play a game this season
It’s going to be interesting to see if Hammond can replicate the success he had last season, when he came out of nowhere to go 20-1-2 with a 1.79 GAA and .941 save percentage, and finish seventh in Vezina voting.