Visnovsky quotes

Lubomir Visnovsky had a conference call today, in which he discussed being “very disappointed” with how the trade from the Kings to Edmonton went down. wrote…“It started with a call on Sunday from his agent Neil Sheehy telling him he was traded to the Oilers, who were not among the six teams that had been discussed as possible destinations, including two unspecified Canadian clubs.”

“No one called me from the L.A. organization,” Visnovsky said Monday on a conference call from his home in Slovakia. “The general manager from the Edmonton Oilers, Kevin Lowe, called me, but no one from L.A. Big surprise for me.”

Visnovsky attributed his troubles last season, in part, to playing on the left side on the power play.

“I love to play on the right,” he said. “It’s easy for my one-timer. It’s my strong side.”

Visnovsky also discussed the fact that his fiancee is pregnant with the couple’s first child but said he’s not upset about the move to Edmonton.

“I told Kevin that for family, it’s a better life in L.A., but for hockey, it’s a better life in Edmonton,” he said, but quickly diffused fears that he may ask out after one season. “It’s OK – she’s strong and she helps me,” he said. “If I’m happy, she’ll be happy.”

Visnovsky also said about the move…

“I’m very happy to play for Edmonton,” he said. “In Canada, hockey is the No. 1 sport, just like in Slovakia. I love countries that love hockey. Edmonton has a big history, they won five Stanley Cups. They have great fans and one of the best ice (surfaces) in the league.”

Lombardi spoke to Visnovsky’s no-trade clause during his conference call this morning. His comments are earlier on the blog, here.

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  • JDM

    poor Vis. Glad he’s happy about being in Edmonton, but I had hoped he would a King for life… and he will DEFINATELY be playing against us with an extra fire under his butt from here on out.

  • johnson

    But I thought you are not going to publish these quotes, Rich? What happened? You missed an opportunity to publish them first…

    More trust in! 😉

  • Anonymous

    Very weak sauce from Lombardi to not even give Visnovsky a phone call, let alone asking Visnovsky if he’d be OK with it. Ironic coming from a man who says he values character, and it’s going to cost him in upcoming negotiations with Kings youngsters.

  • Rich Hammond

    johnson…I’ll certainly take that with the good humor you intended! But I hope you understand my reluctance to publish quotes from a source that had previously proved to be dubious. These quotes were from a TSN story and a Edmonton Oilers conference call. It’s just a judgment call…

  • TeamHasHoles

    It’s a business anonymous… and according to DL, he’d been in contact with his representatives the last few weeks. He doesn’t need Lubomir’s permission to trade him before his NTC kicks in. Could DL have handled it better? Sure, but was he obliged to legally? Not really. Lubomir will be OK, he’ll be making his $7 mil, having a baby and playing on the best ice surface in the league on the right side, where he belongs.

  • Anonymous

    Just a terrible way to treat a loyal and classy player.

    By the way, I was curious about Lubo’s reference to his fiance – wasn’t he already married? I seem to recall an issue way back in his rookie year about bringing his wife over from Slovakia. Did he get divorced at some point?

  • Jonny

    Way to go Crawford. “I love to play on the right,” he said. “It’s easy for my one-timer. It’s my strong side.”

  • 24diving

    Although he may not be required to talk to a player when he is going to trade him, after extending him with a five year NTC contract and saying he was an important part of the organization, it would show some class to call the player to explain why he traded him. Lubo was one of few players who actually want to play here these days, his heart belonged to the Kings, but that held no importance to Lombardi despite his comments to the contrary.

  • Anonymous

    Wasn’t commenting on the business aspect of the trade, TeamHasHoles. I was commenting on how it’s a move that shows no character and find it highly ironic given how Lombardi always harps on character. Guess he expects it from his players but not from himself.

  • Paul

    You know, I have less and less “sympathy” for these guys. You’re all overpaid mercenaries who play a game for a living! You should be happy teams want you to play for them.

    It’s just business. Lubo isn’t a person or a player to Dean Lombardi. He’s a commodity. He moved that commodity before it’s contract clause kicked in and he couldn’t move it freely without first consulting the commodity.

    I know some of you will take offense to me saying he’s nothing more then property, and of course DL or any other GM would deny that, but when you get to the brass tacks of it, that’s all they are to the clubs. Property.

    Lubo got treated like property, and now he’s upset. Sorry, but I’m not crying.

  • Paul

    Oh, and lest any of you try to argue that I’m wrong, witness the meat market that’s gonna open at 9am pacific time tomorrow called unrestricted free agency.

  • Anonymous

    O’Sullivan could be leaving Kings reports

    “He could be the most sought-after Group II guy, because all the other [RFAs] are working on deals [with their respective teams],” O’Sullivan’s agent, Mark Guy, told TFP.”

  • JDM

    Ha, love it Paul. Well put, in the first part especially.

    It’s not like this is unprecedented or that Lombardi is the only one to try and make a move of this sort. Would everyone cry for Dan Boyle if the same thing were to happen to him? Every day transactions happen in hockey that severely affect players lives, both in the short term and long term. Comes with the territory.

    That said I still bleed for Vis, cause I thoroughly loved six years of watching him be one of the best players on the Kings.

  • I still dont get it…

    The more and more I read about this trade and all the quotes, the more I hate this deal. I don’t get it. Stoll had a bad season and is looking to rebound. Isn’t that every player DL has signed or traded for (granted, w/ some exceptions)? I guess the jury is still out on Greene.

    I’m gonna miss Lubo.

  • 28 KINGS

    “Visnovsky attributed his troubles last season, in part, to playing on the left side on the power play.”

    How about all his turnovers? I swear I was watching Corvo on most nights.

  • Damen

    Paul- You are 100% right.

    But, the fact stories like this keep coming back to the Kings and not to teams like Detroit, Anaheim or Philly I don’t think is lost on tomorrows UFA’s. Look at the UFA gems those teams have scored in recent history vs what the Kings have.

    Dean needs to show a little more class, especially if all it entails is a phone call. If not for the players, then for the FANS who deserve a franchise that is thought of as “classy” by players and agents and therefore is on a level playing field with the rest of the league come every July 1st.

  • Bob Bobson

    Paul, you may not cry now but if these actions make players not WANT to sign with the Kings you may be crying then. This is a business and just as we exercised our right to trade Visnovsky, another player may exercise his right to sign with ANA instead of us.

  • Quisp

    Either the trade is bad for the Kings or good (I think it’s good). Either DL screwed over Lubo or he didn’t (I think he didn’t — see his giant contract for evidence). Now it’s about whether DL should have CALLED to tell him he was screwing him over or not screwing him over?? Please. That’s right up there with “it’s not that you cheated on me, it’s that you LIED about it.”

    First of all, the issue has somehow become whether or not DL has any class or manners. I couldn’t care less, and neither could the players. They want to play for a winner and if possible they would like to be treated fairly. But push comes to shove, they want to play for a winner and will settle for being treated badly in the balance.

    And Lubo was not treated badly. It’s completely appropriate for these negotiations to be handled through the agent. DL can make the little “but we can still be friends” call if he wants to, but frankly who listens to this crap? Who believes it?

    And by the way, OF COURSE DL said — when he gave Lubo the big contract — that he wanted Lubo to be there for a long time, essentially to be a King for life. That’s what you say when you give someone the big contract and they’re over thirty. What else is he going to say? “This is a short term fix.”?? It’s a friggin platitude. It’s not even a lie. It’s just the thing you say at that occasion. You don’t take that to the bank. You take your DEAL to the bank. Otherwise, why even bother with the contract? DL can just say a bunch of nice things.

    I don’t hold it against Lubo for saying in the press “hey nobody called me to say goodbye” but that’s really just kind of beside the point.

    And I, as a fan, couldn’t care less if DL calls him or not. I don’t care if he’s got good manners or is rude. I care if he does right by the team and makes good moves. Which he did in this case.

    And what is it exactly that future UFAs or whomever are supposed to be put off by, that DL is not trustworthy or might trade them the day before their NTC kicks in? Man, that’s your agent’s job, to make sure the contract doesn’t leak. Oops. Frankly, it makes me like DL more.

  • Anon D

    Classy move Deano. Are you so busy not interviewing coaches to give the guy a phone call and personally tell him he’s been traded, thanks for all you did? Players are commodities for teams but they are also human beings. Obviously it affected Lubo enough to mention it and it sends out signals about Dean and this organization.

    Hey Dean, why don’t you sign Stoll to a 5 year 30 million dollar contract, then buy him out next year when his concussions force him to retire. That seems to be the legacy you’re leaving here.

  • -J

    So yesterday, everyone’s b!tchin that the kings blindsided Vis, didn’t even have the courtesy to let him know he’s going to be traded, moved him ahead of his NTC. Not once does he mention anything about being pissed about being moved ahead of the NTC. And the article states that EDM was not one of the teams that had been indicated as possible destinations, indicating he clearly knew he was on the block.

    Now today, people are b!tchin that the Kings didn’t call him. FWIW- Vis was playing in the championship game of the inline hockey world championship back home in Slovakia yesterady, when a lot of this was going down. Would you think it would have been classy of the Kings to call him before, during, or after the game to let him know he was traded? The thing is, I bet none of you thinking the Kings handled this poorly even knew about what Vis was doing yesterday or what was going on between the Kings people and his agent, so give all the classy crap a rest already- just like yesterday, you have no clue what actually went down. This is hockey, not some f’in soap opera.

    I can’t wait for FA to begin.

  • Quisp

    -J: I second that.

  • txkingsfan

    Rich .. at least there is someone out there who believes getting the story right is more important than getting the story first. If LGKs published them first, I wouldn’t know since I don’t go there any more after they publish photos of women’s roller hockey and family vacations. Glad you’re Kings fans but lets leave the self-admiration to personal blogs. Thank you for being a professional Rich … I know you know how much that means today in a world where reporters report and write only about things that sell rather than things that matter.

  • Matt Labov

    Been a Kings fan since 1979 and have been through the highs and lows of it all. I may be a purist but if you go on you’ll see that Jarret Stoll is #16. While I realize he won’t get that number, you just wouldn’t see the Red Wings, Canadiens, Leafs and teams with a cognizant history of team, make that mistake. No wonder Marcel Dionne barely makes himself available for team events.

    Rough day for a Kings fan.

  • Brian S

    j – Well said. We really don’t know what went down and who talked to who. It’s a business.

  • Very angry Kings fan.

    This is total bs. Its so obvious that he is better on the right side! I’m not as mad at the trade as i am at the man who stresses character and shows none. He didnt even call lubo for crying out loud! Lubo was an LA Favorite. Crawford and Dean are to blame for Lubo’s bad season. Not Lubo.

  • Duckhunter

    On the business end of it, DL is doing a great job rebuilding this team and organization from the ground up. Making this move makes sense in almost all categories, if not all. But that doesn’t mean we can’t be disappointed that Lubo was traded. He was a excellent King and he’ll be missed. I understand it’s a business, but you still have to have some kind human element to the entity.

    As people posted before he’ll be o.k. I’ll be rooting for him, as I did Nordstrom.

  • AmaysnKingsfan

    Anyways i don’t care if some disagree with me everyone is intitled to there opinon and it’s not CLASSY to put them down for it and lowers the validaty of any agreeument you make. I just think this whole thing could have been handled better. At least call the guy and thank him for all he’s done for us. Lubo liked being a King having a vet in the locker who has been with the team for a long time helps you sign guy slike Sully and Kopitar because it says that they will treat you right. Anyways since Dean didn’t say it I will.

    Thanks Lubo for all you have done for us you are a great player and I am sorry for the way the Kings treated you. You are the only player that can score against the Kings next year and have me not get mad at you. Perfect headline for first game against oilers Lubo scores hat trick against former team Kings win 4-3.
    And for all you guys who say it’s just a business i am glad i don’t work for you. My Boss treats me with respect and i work hard to make him a lot of money cause he does.

  • Josh

    I dont care how Dl treated him. All I care about is having a winning season and this is a big step in that direction. Lubo is a great player but when you end up in 29th place, changes are coming.

    Poor lubo didnt get a phone call. So what? For 7 million you can tell me Im traded by text message and I wouldnt care. In fact, I would be pissed if DL called me and interrupted me counting my $$$.

    He is a rich professional hockey player. I think he will get over it. All you need to grow some testies.

  • Duckhunter

    Josh, I understand now why I wish Lubo well, I had my testies cut. Makes perfect sense now.

  • Fletch

    Rich, AMAZING JOB on all the updates!!! You’re the best!

  • Bryan

    This seems like much ado about nothing. Hockey is big business, and sometimes feelings get hurt. Vis still gets to play in the NHL; it’s not like he’s being sent behind a desk for the next five years.

    Also, I’m a bit curious about one of the posts above…but, isn’t the NHL office responsible for maintaining each individual team’s website? I was under the impression that was the genesis of the Rangers/NHL lawsuit – the control over their internet site. That’d go a long way in explaining why the website lists Stoll’s current number as #16 – there’s probably an intern in New York or Toronto who wouldn’t recognize that it’s been retired in Los Angeles. Although management hasn’t been “stellar” for the past forty-plus years, it seems rather harsh to say they forgot Dionne’s number. Then again, I could be wrong…

  • nykingfan

    Am I missing something here? People are upset because DL didn’t call him? Oh for God’s sake..please give me a break. If he scores the goal that knocks the Kings out of a playoff spot, you guys will be ok with that? I seriously doubt it! You’ll hate him as much as any other guy on Edmonton…take it to the bank. And if you’re not pissed, you’re not a Kings fan.

    He was signed to a large contract by DL setting him up for life. Trades are all part of playing professional sports. Unless you’re a Gretzky, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll be traded without getting a call. And as a fan…I really don’t care whether you were called or not. Future F/A’s will come to the Kings if they are good and the $$ is right. Not whether DL will call them and tuck them in at night. The team that trades you is more interested in contacting the new players coming in, than the guy who will no longer be helping his franchise. Remember folks, this is a business, not a charitable organization trying not to hurt people’s feelings.

    Lubo will be missed until they drop the puck to open the season. At that point I could give a rats ass whether he scores a goal, or even plays a shift. I only care about people wearing the Kings uniform…same as all of you.

    Very Angry Kings fan….are you serious in blaming DL and Crawford for him having a bad year? I’ll chalk up that ridiculous comment to feeling bad for a long time ex King. Anything else and you have no clue about sports. Nobody but Lubo let people walk around him last year. Nobody but Lubo gave away the puck with regularity. I don’t recall DL or Crawford holding his stick for him. Do you for 1 minute belive that Lubo earned his $7 mil last year?

    Again, back to the “its a business” If you’re not productive at work, you’re out on your ass in a heartbeat and I would doubt that your boss will be paying you millions to leave either. My boss is nice…not that nice.

  • Sean Whyte

    For those select few, narrow minded folks posting on this blog, yeah, it’s a business and yeah it’s hockey, but in the end it’s ENTERTAINMENT, so don’t tell me or anyone else how to enjoy or not enjoy my/our entertainment.

    Just goes to show you can’t teach class. You either have it, or (as some have proven here) you don’t.

  • Quisp

    Uh, yeah, I don’t know who you’re referring to re “narrow-minded,” but it’s not narrow-minded to point out that it’s a business, as I (among others) did. It’s not an excuse for treating people badly. I think it’s always a good idea to treat people well (and in fact it’s good business, too). I was not saying “it’s a business and so it’s okay to be a dick.” What I was trying to say is, “it’s a business and so it’s conducted through agents at a high rate of speed and with an eye on the actual business and the letter of the contract/law.”

    It is, of course, as you point out, also entertainment. Part of THAT package is the press and their desire to sensationalize and dramatize every event into a soap opera for our enjoyment. I agree that this is part of the fun of following sports. I guess what I’m saying related to that is that DL’s job performance is not tied to his being nice or polite or classy, any more than Dave Taylor’s was, otherwise Dave Taylor would still be GM.

    It’s also easy to portray a traded player as The Victim. Just like it’s easy to portray the free agent who signs with someone else for more money as a Greedy Bastard. And it’s ALWAYS easy to portray management as Evil.

    Bottom line for me is I don’t think Lubo was treated badly. Who knows? Maybe DL waits a week to call.

    As an aside, have you seen the EDM reaction to the trade? There’s lots of hand-wringing on their side. Why did we give up these guys? V doesn’t want to play here? He’s too old. Etc..

    And now he’s the Oilers’ highest-paid player. If he didn’t react well to the pressure in LA with his big contract, I wonder what will happen now that he’s in hockeyland under a microscope and he’s the richest guy in town.

    I like Lubo. But if you’re going to rebuild, do it.

  • Moondoggie

    Sorry y’all but I’ve been out of town of late…..

    Duckhunter, well said. Lubo was a fan favorite. I liked the kid from the beginning and he will be missed. He had a horrific season last year and personally I believed he’d rebound this season. He did have some personal issues he was dealing with and I think the pressure to perform under the new big contract affected his play. I’m not sure he was the best candidate to wear the “A” last year either. A courtesy call from DL would have been nice but wasn’t required although it was deserved for a guy that had played exceptionally well for LA. He will be missed, particularly his experience and his offense on the power play….

    As far as his contract goes, I seem to recall that leading up to the negotiations, Lubo had been a bit shall we say contankerous? He relaxed, smiled and did the dance once the deal was done but up until then there was a fair amount of animosity & doubt he was going UFA.

    Personally, I like the deal although I am concerned about the concussions with Stoll. You don’t see too many hockey players rebound from those injuries in the new, faster paced NHL. I hope he’s ok but I wouldn’t be skating with my head down if I was him. As far as Greene is concerned, we got bigger and meaner on D. I like that. The fact is, opposing teams plain out blew through our defense last year, a huge part because we weren’t big enough or tough enough to stop anyone. Our goalies were left piecemeal and practically alone every night, no wonder they had such a rough time. The Kings got younger with this deal and bigger, that’s all good. Will Lubo earn the 7mil he’s due next season? I certainly hope so but I just don’t see it, that’s a huge chunk of change to be freed up under the cap. DL needs to take care of Kopi and Sully, otherwise all the draft picks in the world won’t keep LA out of last place every year. I’m keeping my fingers crossed but I can’t argue for the direction DL has the team going in right now, I like it and his moves.

  • Quisp

    Also, Sean Whyte, it’s not classy to insult people. On top of which, it hurts your argument.

  • Moondoggie


  • -J

    Quisp- don’t feed the trolls.

  • nykingfan

    well said Quisp

  • Anonymous

    Where in the article does Lubomir state his feelings are hurt? The article claims he was disappointed, but his only quote is “Big surprise for me.”

    Probably more surprised DL didn’t call him, but I’m sure he is surprised he got traded too.

    I’m sure Dean will contact him, who knows how many calls he was fielding and BUSINESS he was attending to at the time of the trade?

    Bummer he didn’t have time to call Lubo but I’m sure he is planning on it.

    Bottom line, I think the media sensationalized this as a no-class move, while Dean was just busy as hell in preparation for going into one of the most important days of the offseason.

    Doesn’t seem like there is a character issue there to me.

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