‘Heartless’ Semin Signed One-Year Contract Because He Was Too Lazy to Sign Multi-Year, GM’s Say
NHL general managers around the league have claimed that enigmatic yet talented winger Alexander Semin signed a one-year contract because he was too lazy to sign longer and not because there is a prejudice against Russian players.
“I offered him a 6-year deal,” said Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford. “But the one-year contract was shorter and easier to read. So he signed that one. That’s what lazy players with no heart do.”
An investigation by Real Hockey News set out to find out why Semin, a player who has scored 408 points in 459 games while maintaining a +65, was only given a one-year contract while players with less impressive stats, such as Zach Parise (502 gp, 410 pts, +57) and Jordan Staal (431 gp, 248 pts, +53), who were each given extremely lucrative, long-term contracts. Parise signed a 13-year, $90 million with the Minnesota Wild and Staal signed a 10-year, $60 million with the Carolina Hurricanes.
Many commentators and fans suspected that the favorable attention on Parise and Staal was due to longstanding prejudiced amongst many of the NHL’s mostly Canadian brass, especially after TSN analysts Pierre McGuire and Marc Crawford obliterated the character of Semin on live TV, calling him everything from “lazy” and “heartless” to “the kind of guy who would kick you in the knee and poop in your mom’s corn flakes.”
However, an interview with several GM’s around the league who claimed to have made multi-year offers to Semin reveals that the one-year contract Semin signed was not a result of widespread prejudice, but because Semin just did not care, really.
“We thought he would be a good fit with Sidney Crosby,” Pittsburgh Penguins GM Ray Shero said. “So I considered giving him 5 years at $6 million. More than fair for a guy who doesn’t have heart and is a known cancer in the locker room. But he would just fall asleep during the talks. I’d try to wake him but he would just drool all over himself.”
When asked to elaborate on what Shero meant by Semin not having a heart and being a “cancer in the locker room,” Shero shrugged. “I don’t know. That’s what I heard.”
Columbus Blue Jackets GM, Scott Howson, had a similar story about Semin.
“Look, we barely have a team anymore,” Howson said. “So I needed somebody. Anybody. But I would call Semin’s agent and offer him a great, multi-year contract and you know what his agent would call me back with? He’d say Semin doesn’t feel like looking at a map to see where Columbus is, so he’s not interested. You believe that?”
Buffalo Sabres GM Darcy Regier said he would have liked to make a long-term offer to Semin, but was not able to start negotiations.
“I thought I had his number around here somewhere,” Regier said as he shuffled through post-it notes and graham crackers on his desk. “Where did I put that darn thing?”
Although several NHL GM’s had similar reasons for Semin not signing with their team, it turned out that they did not actually make an offer to Semin.
“No, I didn’t say I did make an offer,” Shero said. “I said if I did, Semin wold have been too lazy to sign and would have drooled all over himself while sleeping. That’s what heartless, lazy, locker room cancers do, right? So I’ve heard.”
Howson also admitted that he did not make a actual offer to Semin.
“Of course I didn’t make a real offer to him,” Howson said. “The Blue Jackets ownership only allows me 200 minutes on my cell phone plan. Why waste precious minutes if I already know he’s probably too lazy to look at a map? I saw the Pierre McGuire video. I know what’s up.”
Despite Semin’s reputation, Regier said he would still like to make an offer, despite the winger already being signed with the Hurricanes.
“I just got to find that darn number. Do you have it?” he said. “I hope he’s not signed yet. I haven’t seen a newspaper in a few days. He’s still available, right?’
Rutherford, who managed to overcome his intense hesitations about Semin, said he did not make an actual multi-year contract, either.
“No, I just assumed he would have been too lazy to sign a multi-year contract, so I brought a nice, short and sweet one-year deal to the meeting,” he said.”Now, a player like Jordan Staal, he’s from Canada, so I know he’s going to have enough energy to sign a big, fat deal. That’s why we gave him 10 years and $60 mil even though he has about half the points Semin does in the same amount of time, despite playing on a team as stacked as the Pens.”
Rutherford added: “Thank God we have people like Pierre McGuire and Marc Crawford to tell us who are heartless, lazy cancers so we don’t waste time and ink printing out multi-year deals.”