Erik Erlendsson covers the Tampa Bay Lightning for The Tampa Tribune.
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Dan Boyle vents his frustration.
Posted Jul 4, 2008 by Erik Erlendsson
Updated Jul 4, 2008 at 09:19 PM
Guys, wanted to pass along a couple of comments from my conversation with Dan Boyle. Needless to say, he’s not happy with how the ownership group handled this situation.
I’ll give you two quotes to get you thinking about what will be in the newspaper tomorrow.
“I understand at the end of the day that it’s a business, this is a business. I understand that more than anybody. But there is a way to conduct business, and the way that my situation was handled was absolutely not the way to do it. I, for a long time now, have been under the impression that I was part of this team going forward, wanting input from me on other players, and never in a million years did I think that I was one of the guys that needed to go. Just a few days ago [media were told] that the rumors were a joke, Dan Boyle is going to play 25 minutes, he’s not being traded, he’s not going anywhere. They made it clear that we are not going to go after an offensive-defenseman [in free agency] because we have the best one in the league. Now, going back to business-is-business, when I find out from an absolutely ton of different sources that my [butt] has been on the trading block since I signed the extension, that to me, is not the way you do business. If [they] wanted to get rid of me, let me know. There is a way to do that, it’s been done in the past, just say that “Danny, it’s just not going to work’’ just let me know. And that’s just not the way it’s done. And that really pisses me off.’‘
And one more to whet your appetite:
“It got to the point where once it probably a few days ago, when I was threatened, that they just didn’t care and that my [butt] is going to end up on waivers and end up in Atlanta. That’s just not the way you do business. I don’t know if I have too much class or what, because I don’t want to say exactly what was said, but when it gets personal like it did, the line was crossed. When my work ethic is questioned, my off-season work ethic and the way I get ready for games and what I do is questioned, and it gets personal, and I’m threatened, that is absolutely the way not to do business. And I feel sad because I can’t say one thing bad, even with all the ups and downs and battles I had with [former coach John Tortorella], at the end of the day there was respect. In this case I was absolutely blindsided by this whole situation. I know what the response is, that things happen quickly, it’s a business, but that’s not the case when Im told one thing and I find out months later that the complete opposite went on behind my back.’‘
In response to Boyle’s comments, here is what co-owners Len Barrie and Oren Koules had to say:
“I think one thing you ask around about my character or Oren’s, we are straight shooters and I’ve never been accused of being nothing but straight,’’ Barrie said. “It’s too bad he feels that way, but if Wayne Gretzky can be traded then Dan Boyle can be traded.
“Dan has been a great player for Tampa Bay, and I played with Dan so that’s why I’ve tried to stay out of it because I really like Dan as a person and as a player. But this was a decision we made to get younger and create some space to pay our forwards what we need to pay. And I think it’s going to be a great trade for both teams.’‘
And this from Koules:
“Dan is very passionate about being a member of the Tampa Bay Lightning and that’s something that I will always respect about Dan.’’