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Jack Johnson on Kings: “I could care less if they win or lose”

Apr 26, 2012, 3:53 PM EDT

Jack Johnson Columbus

Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Post-Dispatch caught up with Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson on Wednesday, prior to Johnson leaving to play with Team USA at the upcoming World Hockey Championships in Sweden/Finland.

Eventually, the conversation turned to Johnson’s former team — the Los Angeles Kings — and their stunning first-round upset of the Presidents’ Trophy-winning Canucks.

Portzline asked if it was easy or hard to watch LA play well in the playoffs, to which Johnson replied…

“It’s funny. I’ve been asked that by a few people. I don’t feel any emotional connection to the Kings at all. To me, it’s just another hockey game. I’ve completely turned the page like that. If I’m out and I happen to see it on TV, it’s really not a big deal.

“To be honest with you, I could care less if they win or lose. Some guys on that team I played with, I’ll always consider friends. But whether they win or not, it means nothing to me.”

This shouldn’t come as a huge shock. Most of Johnson’s post-trade comments suggested his relationship with the Kings wasn’t great (see here) and his exit conversation with GM Dean Lombardi sounded, uh, blunt (see here).

That said…now you really have to start wondering if Johnson was a divisive presence in the L.A. room. After the trade, the Kings went 12-5-3 (plus 4-1 in the playoffs) and given Jeff Carter‘s minimal returns — nine points in the regular season, two in the postseason — it could be argued there was an addition-by-subtraction thing going on with Johnson.

I mean, just listen to him talk about his time with the Kings:

Asked if such a disconnect with his former club surprised him, Johnson said: “Yes, and no. It tells me I’m happy where I am. That’s all I need to know.

“I don’t have any animosity. If I had a chance, I’d probably thank them for trading me, because I feel like I’m in a better spot now. I’m where I belong.”

That sound like a guy who was happy to be in L.A.?

  1. cweez2 - Apr 26, 2012 at 3:56 PM

    If you could care less, then you care some. Hell, he could care a ton for all we know.

    But on the other hand thinking that being in Columbus is a better spot…then maybe that explains it.

    • atb4 - Apr 26, 2012 at 4:15 PM

      It really grinds my gears when people misuse could/couldn’t care less.

      • bigtganks - Apr 26, 2012 at 5:19 PM

        That’s too bad. I think most people could care less…
        😉 just kiddin with ya.

  2. nobandwagoners - Apr 26, 2012 at 4:01 PM

    Cudos to Johnson for at least giving an honest answer rather than the usual drivel players, coaches and GMs dish out. And if you want him (and others) to give some honest answers and ‘off the cuff’ remarks, then don’t crucify him for it.

  3. bloggersarenotjournalists - Apr 26, 2012 at 4:20 PM

    People in LA are realizing that they couldn’t care less that Johnson is no longer on the team.
    Another US Hockey program failure

  4. barroomhero80 - Apr 26, 2012 at 4:41 PM

    He cares. Jackass season is over and his old team is kicking ass. Glad he’s gone.

  5. Doesnotmatter - Apr 26, 2012 at 5:15 PM

    And that is why Quick will demand a no movement clause and a ton of money next year. A Vezina nominee and now a proven playoff performer. I’m thinking of at least 6 million per year. Maybe even 7. Like Doughty and Rinne. Its just business, right? Johnson for Carter was a good trade for the Kings but Lombardi could have handled it better. Its gonna come back and bite Lombardi in the a$$.

  6. jkaflagg - Apr 26, 2012 at 8:23 PM

    While Carter has not had a lot of points in LA, his presence has opened up lots of opportunity for the other forwards, and defensively Slava Voynov has stepped into his spot with no drop off whatsoever… just can’t ignore JMFJ’s culmulative -90 +/- in his Kings career. He has great physical talent but not great instincts and was a bit of a puck watcher – always a step slow to react and a second late, and this really became evident in contrast with Drew Doughty when he joined the team. Kings fan appreciated his hard work but in reality a fresh start in another town is probably the best thing for him.

  7. ron05342 - Apr 26, 2012 at 10:41 PM

    If he has no emotional connection to a team that he played five years for (as he claims), then what does that say about his emotional connection to the franchise he currently plays for?

  8. blomfeld - Apr 27, 2012 at 1:02 AM


    An interesting and insightful article by Halford, who perhaps while being no Dadoun, is nonetheless deserving of “full marks” for bringing this curious “intel” to light. Johnson-Schmonson say we LA KIngs fans ! Of course we know that he was a talented player and we wish him the very best there in Ohio. Nonetheless, he and his envious remarks equate to nothing more than “flotsam” in our wake, as we carry on to the next battle and ultimate victory ! GO KINGS GO ! :)

  9. gbiscottagecheesefatties - Apr 27, 2012 at 1:12 AM

    “I don’t have any animosity. If I had a chance, I’d probably thank them for trading me, because I feel like I’m in a better spot now. I’m where I belong.”

    He must have really wanted out of LA if he is enjoying his time more in Columbus. Not a rip on Blue Jacket fans, just stating the obvious. Eventually the Blue Jackets luck has to turn around but it should take a bit more time.

  10. timgodfreycomedy - Apr 27, 2012 at 11:24 AM

    jack johnson is just jealous and upset that his team is in the second round of the playoffs and hes stuck in columbus paying for a crappy apartment and counting down the days until he can leave that God forsaken town. He is being a big baby and if i were his teammates/friends on the kings, i would call him out for that comment

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