At this point, opinion regarding Tyler Seguin appears to be divided into two groups. Group 1 we'll call "Those who wonder if Tyler Seguin might be wise to cut down on the frequency of his nights out".
Group 2 we'll call "Tyler Seguin's parents".
I wasn't going to weigh in on this since it came out over a week ago and we already touched on the comments made by Seguin's mom, but I saw the comments from his father, Paul Seguin, again this morning and I have to say a few things.
As we know, shortly after the Boston Bruins shuttled Seguin off to Dallas, the Boston media began to share tales of Seguin's proclivities. The team had to sit him down during the Toronto series; they posted guards outside his hotel room like he was a key witness in a mob trial; we're not saying Seguin is a baby-eater, but he's never gone on record saying he isn't.
Eventually, as we covered on free agency day, Seguin's mom rose to his defence, accusing the Boston media of "making up stories" in an attempt to justify the trade.
Then his dad joined the defence team, although I'm not so sure that his testimony is all that helpful. Rather than take Mrs. Seguin's approach and suggest his son was being slandered, Mr. Seguin primarily defended (and thus corroborated reports on) Seguin's lifestyle.
It was all very disconcerting.
Yes, Seguin routinely hits the bars and stays out into the wee hours, Mr. Seguin said. But what else is he going to do? From the Toronto Star:
“Who do you turn to when your teammates are older and you are by yourself and your family is in Toronto?” his father told the Star.
“With all respect to David Krejci or Milan Lucic, when the game is over, they go out with their family and hang out in the back of a restaurant. They’re nice and quiet and no one tweets about it. Tyler looks to his friends for comfort and where do his friends go? They go to the local bar."
One wonders if the right approach here is slagging Krejci and Lucic for being family men. Furthermore, one of the charges against Seguin is that his friends are a bad influence on him. Consider that one supported.
Also supported, as Joe Haggerty pointed out Saturday morning: the report that the Bruins had to sit Seguin down and talk to him about his lifestyle during the Toronto series.
Tyler Seguins dad confirms my report following trade that B's had sitdown w/Seguin during 1st round series vs Toronto http://t.co/vcQsaiw1cz
— Joe Haggerty (@HackswithHaggs) July 13, 2013
In attempting to suggest that his son was being unfairly singled out, Mr. Seguin confirmed that this sit-down happened:
"I started to hear little bits and pieces of it in the Toronto series," he said. "They were unhappy with his performance, but they should have termed it their performance."
He said the Bruins were questioning his performance. They asked him, "Is there something going on? Are you staying out late?"
"From that moment, they started to lose faith in him," his father said.
Their performance. Man.
What blows me away here is that Mr. Seguin is describing an incident in which his son's employers felt it necessary to take him aside, and rather than reflect on that, he tries to shift blame away from his son and onto the team.
This is not what my dad would do if this had happened to me. But my dad was never cool.
Mr. Seguin, on the other hand, sounds like Amy Poehler's character in Mean Girls.
In a sense, I understand the point Seguin's dad is trying to make. His son is acting pretty much like a rich and popular 21-year-old away from home. But as I understand it, and as Paul Seguin even admitted, that was a big part of the problem. I'm not sure what could be gained from defending Seguin's right to act in a way that his employers deemed frustratingly unprofessional.
No doubt some of Seguin's friends are a bad influence. But the Dallas Stars may soon discover it goes beyond them.