Minnesota Wild defenseman Ryan Suter clarified comments made Monday about not wanting to be paired with Jonas Brodin on defense.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune’s Michael Russo spoke with Suter at Tuesday’s morning skate at the United Center in Chicago, where the All-Star defenseman admitted he made a mistake the prior day in calling out the coaching staff.
"We’re obviously on the same page," Suter said. "It’s a story that shouldn’t even be a story. I think the heat of the practice yesterday, I was just saying stuff I probably shouldn’t have said. But at the end of the day, it’s about winning and it’s about what's going to be best for our team. Obviously Brods is a great defenseman, Spurge is a good defenseman, we’ve got a lot of good defensemen. I told you at the beginning of the year, our D corps I think is up there at the top of the league. It’s not really news to me anymore."
On Monday, Suter was critical of the coaching staff’s decision to play him with Brodin, since both players are left-handed shots.
Below is from the Star Tribune after the practice.
This is no swipe at Brodin because Suter respects him as a player, but Suter's had a solid start to this season, especially offensively, and he thinks playing with a right-shot like Spurgeon gives him more options in all three zones. On skating with Brodin, Suter said, "Yeah, I don’t know what’s going on there. He decided to change things up. I don’t know what they’re thinking."
When Suter was asked if he was OK with the move he said, “No. We’ll talk about it. We’ll figure it out. Maybe for certain points you have to do this to play against certain guys and situations. I know (Marco Scandella) is coming back, so I don’t think it’s going to be an end a result. He (Mike Yeo) is the coach."
The Wild have gone 1-4-2 in their last seven games, and Monday’s practice was reportedly ‘tense’ with coach Mike Yeo using harsh words towards his players. On Tuesday Suter and Yeo reportedly chatted and smoothed out their issues.
"One thing I’ve learned is you never judge a player how they react to something by their initial reaction," Yeo added. "Some players, they’ll nod their head and they’ll say, 'Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah,' and it goes in one ear and out the other ear and other players they might react in a way that you don’t think is great and then they're the ones that go out and actually take it all in. I know Suts is a guy like that. I learned a long time ago coaching him, he’s not one of those 'yeah, yeah' guys, but he’s a guy that when you ask him to do something, he might tell you his opinions, but nobody will go out there and do it better than him."
Suter is currently on pace for the best offensive season of his career with 20 points in 22 games, playing an average of 28:01 per-contest.
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