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 NorthJersey.com (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.”