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Bobby Ryan calls Burke ‘gutless’ for intensity remarks

Jan 2, 2014, 11:33 AM EST

OTTAWA, ON - DECEMBER 16: Bobby Ryan #6 of the Ottawa Senators skates against the St. Louis Blues at Canadian Tire Centre on December 16, 2013 in Ottawa, Canada. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) Getty Images

When Bobby Ryan first found out that he didn’t make the cut for Team USA, he was probed for his reaction.

“Insert ‘says all the right things’ here,” Ryan Tweeted to Ottawa Sun writer Don Brennan.

Evidently the “right things” includes an attack on Calgary Flames president Brian Burke for his scathing assessment of him.

“He is not intense. That word is not in his vocabulary,” Burke said, according to an ESPN report about the selection process. “It’s never going to be in his vocabulary. He can’t spell intense.”

Burke tried to reach out to Ryan on Wednesday, but the Ottawa Senators forward hasn’t called back.

Instead Ryan publicly called Burke “gutless,” according to the Ottawa Sun’s Bruce Garrioch.

“Actually I almost feel degraded when it comes out like that,” Ryan said. He added that he would try to use it as motivation going forward.

Ryan ranks fifth among American-born players with 36 points in 42 games this season. He also surpassed the 30-goal mark in four consecutive campaigns from 2008-09 to 2011-12.

It’s worth noting though that Burke wasn’t alone in his opinion. Another member called him a “sleepy” skater and when Nashville Predators GM David Poile asked people to raise their hand if they were worried about Ryan, plenty of the people on the selection committee did so.

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