Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Fedorov's jersey

So lately there has been a number retirement debate going on over at NOHS. The players that have been debated over there are Homer, Drapes, Ozzie and Fedorov. While I think none of those will be retired, I'd like to see Homer's number go and I see good arguments both for and against Draper and Ozzie. But when it comes to Fedorov... I think this is the time for me to finally make my big "I hate Sergei Fedorov with a fucking passion"-post.

Don't get me wrong, Sergei Fedorov was an amazing player back in the day, one of the most talented players of his era. And I am grateful for all he did for the Red Wings. However I have alway felt uneasy about the guy. He was inconsistent, often seemed like he didn't care. His recent comments about jealouy makes a good point, about himself. Feds always saw himself as the best player on the team, maybe in the league. He believed the focus should be on him and that he should be the leader. The team should have been his team. Do you guys remember how he always found another level when Stevie was out and he was the captain? Some people might call that clutch. I call it Sergei being incredibly jealous of Stevie and his leadership. Sergei thought Stevie's position should have been his, he thought the Russian five should have been the first line and play all the time and when he got the spotlight, the leader role he suddently cared. He also sat out half a season on strike in 97/98. When you do that, you are not a team guy. He even signed an offer sheet from the Canes and only went back to playing when the Wings matched their inflated offer. That's class and commitment for you. Or as Zappa would say "only in it for the money".

Then in 03, he rejected great offers to go to the enemy, the team that just had eliminated the Wings, the Ducks. He has later claimed that this was because of ms. Kournikova and their bad breakup. I don't care about what his warped relationship with her was, it was still treason on a high level and another example of him showing no loyalty, but rather lust for cash and even more, for the spotlight to be on him and not some Stevie guy from Bumfuck, BC.

The final nail in the coffin came a few months ago. He went out in Russian media slamming Scotty Bowman and the entire team and culture in the Red Wings. He accused them of jealousy, of trying to keep him down and hurt his progress. Such moronic lies shows that in his warped self-centered fantasy reality has been twisted into another form.

Sergei was a great player, but he never played for the team, he played for his own personal glory. He betrayed the team in the end and was close to doing it earlier, and his backstabbing comments show that he has no love for Detroit. Retiring his jersey would be ridiculous. A jersey retirement should show commitment to a team, it is for the guys who played with the logo tattooed to their chests. Sergei is nowhere near that.


  1. I'm totally sympatico with you there. What you've described in Federov is the quickest way for any hockey player to earn my everlasting fiery hatred.

    You've also totally summed up the reasons why I'd be behind seeing Draper's jersey up in the rafters. He's never been the star, he's never been flashy, he's never been given enough credit; but the man's blood cells are shaped like winged wheels.

    He's played his career for this club, sweated for it, and bled for it, and he continues, in his 16th season at 38 years old, to work every shift like it's his last chance at glory. I mean, it's crazy to see how hard this man works and how fast he can still be. When you consider, too, that he's keeping up with Helm (23) and Eaves (25) on a nightly basis... the man gets my respect.

    Plus, he's a mentor. He's a role model. He's a pattern card I'd like to see more up and coming kids try to emulate. His work ethic is one of the things that I think makes a Wing a Wing. He make it into the rafters and I for one will salute with pride!

  2. Yeah, I'd love to see Draper's jersey up there at some point, he's one of those guys who really deserve it. Sadly I just don't see it happening because the Wings are very conservative with who they retire.

    But yes, he's been a great worker and a great role model for the younger guys.

    I realize that retiring 18, 25 and 33 would be too much and that retiring Drapes could be a symbol of all three. But if they won't retire him, maybe they should just put up a banner in honour of the grind line without retiring any numbers.

  3. Funny how I pretty much FORGOT about Fedorov until I saw him & his sharp-as-a-razor cheekbones at the Olympics. I remember what an amazing player he was for the Wings, but like most of you have said, I can't help but remember him with a feeling of anger and bitterness at all the drama he caused within the Wings organization. To even compare him to the likes of our loyal Wing-for-lifers, such as Stevie, Homer, Nick, the Grind Line... I feel it's an insult to our quality players. Yes, I know he won the Hart Trophy, and yes, he was part of the Russian Five (though I always felt that Iggy was the heart of that line, not Fedorov), and without him, we probably wouldn't have won those cups in the 90s, but unlike Shanny, I was never sad to see him go. To put his number up there with #s 1,7,9,10,12, 19 (& hopefully not too soon #5), would be a mistake, and would water down everything it means to have a Wing's number retired.

  4. I agree Amanda. Igor was the heart of that line and he anchored it so well. Yes, Feds was a huge part, but I think it'd have worked without him and he is not in any type of number retirement worty class

  5. seryoga's girlMarch 22, 2010 at 12:36 PM

    Sad how misunderstood a situation can be. How misleading media can be.
    Sure he was jealous. Which of you enjoys working really hard, and then hearing the boss say how unimportant you are. Can you then find the same intensity? When the team was down, they used the Russians to win, and they did. But credit in the form of more ice time or even a pat on the back never came. When you feel insecure about your place, it's difficult to bring your A game nightly. Just ask anyone at trade deadline. What you all don't know is what went on behind the scenes. The attitude given to create the atmosphere that made Sergei uncomfortable. And-the recent article? Read the original in Russian. He says he felt insecure all the time. It was about his feelings. About a guy who was told "leave your country and family behind, and we'll take care of you and be your family."
    Did he want money, sure-few guys play for free. Was he often misguided by those managing his career? Yes and he's paid the price. Sergei loves Detroit. However,the very place he loves and wanted to retire,fills him with extreme insecurity. Say what you will. He who is perfect is always welcome to throw the first stone.

  6. okay, so you know everything that went on? mkay.. lets all bow to your superior knowledge and start loving mr. Primadonna

  7. seryoga's girlMarch 22, 2010 at 10:24 PM

    yes I do know. Personally. A primadonna? When last did you lace up the boots and risk physical injury for anyone? Talk about something you know. This you do not.

  8. mkay. Nice. And until you dare reveal how, I'm gonna write that off as BS. Let me elaborate.

    Fedorov not getting credit or ice time? He played ALOT during those days, the fact the Russian five played at the important moments in games should have given him confidence. The fact he wore the A was a sign of how they valued him, and the fact he wore the C when Stevie was hurt showed it even more. Yes Scotty was at times hard on him, like he was on everyone, but he has also called him one of the most talented players who ever played. Scotty believed in tough love, some players could handle that, Sergei couldn't. And Yzerman was the most important player, and Sergei didn't seem to handle that either. To me he has always seemed like a classic Axl Rose case. Huge ego and a huge need for validation.

    I read a translation of the entire original interview, and I also got my sister who reads Russian decently to read it to me. And to me it sounded like a collection of sour grapes from a guy who put himself in front of the team and who couldn't handle that his coach and the fans valued Stevie more than him.

    And poor Sergei who left Russia to earn fucking millions and millions of dollars, date models and live the dream.

    And when it comes to money, yes players all want it, but very few choose to sit out half a season to get more.

    The last time I laced up my boots and risked physical injury on the ice is soon 6 years ago. I admit that, I didn't have the talent needed. But if I did have it, I sure as hell would have risked everything for my team and my teammates

  9. u guys are all idoiots and especially u Andy, fedorov is wayy beter than yzerman on both sides of the ice yzerman was a great offensive player but fedorov was great offensivly and defensivly unlike yzerman. get your facts straight and trust me fedorov is one of the greatest things that's happened in detroit. Go Caps, Ovechkins gonna crush ur 2 wimps zetterberg and datsuyk.

  10. lawls... troll alert. Yzerman was the leader. He had one of the greatest offensive talents in the NHL (which is why his numbers are better), but sacrificed part of that to be a good defensive player. He was the guy who played great, even when he was so hurt he could barely walk. He blocked shots. He was the perfect captain. Would be nice if commenters had at least watched a Wings game from that period.

  11. Fedorov was possibly my favorite Wing to watch as a 7 year old during the 97-98 season, I had no idea what was happening behind the scenes with his personal little strike. It makes me sad to have to look at him in that light. Kind of puts a little stain on my view of that glorious team we had back then.

  12. Fedorov was the best Red Wing since Gordie Howe he was the most talented ever...I once asked a statistician at the joe who the best player on the wings was he replied without a doubt Sergei retire his # without him those cups in the 90s probably wouldn't have happened. Oh and draper sucked so much.