Skip to content

Frustrated Muller rips ‘Canes: ‘Losing is for losers’

Mar 18, 2014, 10:50 AM EST

kirkmullergetty Getty Images

The Carolina Hurricanes are primed to miss the playoffs for the fifth straight season — the second under head coach Kirk Muller — and, on Monday, Muller voiced his frustration about the lack of winning.

From the Raleigh News & Observer:

At the end of the team practice at Raleigh Center Ice, Muller gathered his players around him on the ice for a few words. He was loud and his message clear.

Muller talked of “wanting guys who want to make a difference.” He said “losing is for losers” and that too many of the players were cheating and “playing their own way.”

Too many, he said, were “playing for the scoresheet” and worried about getting theirs. Some were more worried about new contracts, he said, and others about somehow holding on and playing another year in NHL.

Carolina has been one of the NHL’s biggest disappointments over the last two seasons, especially given all the money GM Jim Rutherford has spent on talent acquisition. Nearly $130 million was committed to the Jordan Staal, Alex Semin and Jeff Skinner trio and while all three have had their moments, it hasn’t been enough to keep the ‘Canes in the playoff hunt.

Looking ahead, it’ll be interesting to see what happens with the players Muller suggested were playing for new deals.

Carolina only has 13 players under contract for next season, and has decisions to make on a number of key UFAs — including veteran defensemen Joni Pitkanen and Ron Hainsey, and veteran forwards Manny Malhotra and Radek Dvorak.

There are also a number of RFAs the team will need to decide on as well: Jiri Tlusty, Andrei Loktionov, Drayson Bowman, Nathan Gerbe, Brett Bellemore and, most importantly, Olympic defenseman Justin Faulk, who figures to be in line for a sizable raise on the $840,000 he made this season.

For all the players with uncertain futures, one thing is clear — Muller and the ‘Canes are using the final few games of this season as an audition for next year and beyond.

“We’re moving forward,” Muller said. “If you want to fit in, show it. Do it with work. I don’t want guys who don’t show up, who have bad body language. We’re going to practice hard, we’re going to play hard and we’re going to win games.”

Latest Posts
  1. Capitals’ Trotz: ‘They were trying to make a statement and we responded’

    Jan 29, 2015, 12:30 AM EST

    Barry Trotz Getty Images

    Washington is now three points back of Pittsburgh in the Metropolitan Division.

  2. Video: Tempers boil over between Capitals, Penguins

    Jan 28, 2015, 11:05 PM EST

    Screen Shot 2015-01-28 at 7.53.32 PM

    Christian Ehrhoff was hurt on the play.

  3. Leafs lose to Devils in shootout, drop seventh straight

    Jan 28, 2015, 10:43 PM EST

    Phil Kessel; Peter Horachek AP

    Had the edge in shots, and shot attempts, but only one point to show for.

  4. Video: Ovechkin’s blast gives him NHL lead in goals

    Jan 28, 2015, 9:53 PM EST

    Alex Ovechkin AP

    “Feeling the flow. Working it. Working it.”

  5. WATCH LIVE: Blackhawks at Kings

    Jan 28, 2015, 9:39 PM EST

    Blackhawks-Kings AP

    Western Conference foes.

  6. Video: Wilson throws haymakers at Sill on Rivalry Night

    Jan 28, 2015, 8:50 PM EST

    Wilson-Sill

    Washington’s young forward landed some bombs.

  7. Video: Ovi opens scoring vs. Pens, now tied for NHL goals lead

    Jan 28, 2015, 8:31 PM EST

    alexovechkinap AP

    His 28th of the season, kicking off Rivalry Night.

  8. AHL to make ‘major announcement’ tomorrow; will be about new California division

    Jan 28, 2015, 5:21 PM EST

    AHLlogo

    Sharks, Ducks, Kings, Flames, and Oilers will all have their affiliates in the west next season.

  9. Five team stats you may find interesting

    Jan 28, 2015, 3:02 PM EST

    Mike Richards, Michael Hutchinson AP

    The Los Angeles Kings are bad at the shootout, and the Buffalo Sabres are good at it.

  10. Goalie nods: Slumping Bernier back in for Leafs

    Jan 28, 2015, 2:15 PM EST

    Jonathan Bernier AP

    News and notes from around the crease…

  11. Isles’ Clutterbuck latest to be fined for diving

    Jan 28, 2015, 1:51 PM EST

    Montreal Canadiens v New York Islanders Getty Images

    An incident against Philly on Jan. 19 was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Featured video

Who will excite most in All-Star game?
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. S. Crosby (3668)
  2. K. Letang (3051)
  3. E. Malkin (3007)
  4. S. Bobrovsky (2565)
  5. C. Price (2537)
  1. P. Hornqvist (2464)
  2. T. Johnson (2377)
  3. P. Rinne (2019)
  4. M. Richards (1953)
  5. J. Gaudreau (1752)