Matteau’s junior team dismissal ‘unfair,’ says father


Stephane Matteau saw a lot of things during his lengthy hockey career.

Just nothing like this.

That’s what the former NHLer said on Wednesday in discussing the events that led to his son — Devils prospect Stefan Matteau — being dismissed from his Quebec junior league team after a playoff game on Apr. 20.

“I’ve never seen an organization releasing a guy five minutes after a game,” Matteau told (Stefan was dropped from Blainville-Broisbriand following a rift with the head coach). “It’s very, very, very disappointing.

“I’m very disappointed and I didn’t go back to work the next day. I did not go to work the next day. I did not interfere, but I did not agree with what happened.”

Yes, that’s right — he didn’t go back to work.

Stephane was serving as an assistant coach for Blainville at the time of the incident, making an uncomfortable situation all the more awkward.

It turns out the elder Matteau didn’t return to work at all. He sat out the remainder of the series and stills sounds upset at how his son was treated.

Stephane didn’t just take issue with the immediacy of the decision (noting that Blainville-Broisbriand management kicked Stefan off the team right after an emotional contest).

He’s also upset Stefan was being held to a different standard than other players.

“Personally, what I didn’t like was it coming out in the paper and that they had a big press conference,” he explained. “I’m their co-worker and they came out and they made a big scene. They don’t even do that in the pros.

“To separate a kid from the others like that, I thought it was unfair and still today I’m choked [up] because I don’t agree with what they did.”

Wild lose Graovac (groin) for 2-3 weeks

Tyler Graovac, Sam Reinhart,
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After making the Wild out of training camp, Tyler Graovac got some bad news on Tuesday — head coach Mike Yeo said Graovac would miss the next 2-3 weeks with a groin strain.

Graovac, 22, played just under 14 minutes in Minnesota’s crazy 5-4 comeback win over Colorado in the season-opener, but sat out Saturday’s win over St. Louis.

At 6-foot-5 and 200 pounds, Graovac was a notable physical presence in the Wild lineup, and is an intriguing prospect — he impressed with AHL Iowa last year, scoring 21 goals and 46 points in 73 games.

Already without Eberle, the Oilers could also be missing Hall tonight

Taylor Hall

Taylor Hall is sick and reportedly “doubtful” for tonight’s game in Dallas.

Hall did not skate with the Oilers this morning. If he can’t play, Edmonton’s top two lines against the Stars could feature Ryan Nugent-Hopkins between wingers Teddy Purcell and Benoit Pouliot, followed by Connor McDavid centering Lauri Korpikoski and Nail Yakupov.

The Oilers — forced to start the season without top-six winger Jordan Eberle — have scored just once in their first two games, losing 3-1 in St. Louis and 2-0 in Nashville.

Edmonton returns home after tonight’s contest to play St. Louis on Thursday. Then it’s back out on the road for games against Calgary and Vancouver.