"It's been fine": Kadri talks relationship with Flames coach Sutter

Mar 23 2023, 7:53 pm

For those wondering if there was a fracture in the relationship and communication between Calgary Flames forward Nazem Kadri and head coach Darryl Sutter, the former has dished.

It’s been fine.

“It’s been fine. It’s been fine,” Kadri told media Thursday. “Throughout an 82-game season, you’re going to have rough patches and not everything is going to go your way through eight months of playing. It’s about how you bounce back and how you fight that adversity. That’s something I’ve been pretty good at throughout my career.

“That’s no different.”

Kadri’s happiness — or lack thereof — with how things have gone in his first season with the Flames has been subject to speculation and rumour of late.

The 32-year-old has been “very vocal” about how the Flames are being run, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.

“Kadri gets benched. It’s a weird benching to me. The one thing I’ll say about Kadri is the best thing about him is… he’s blunt. He’s going to say what’s on his mind,” Friedman said on the 32 Thoughts Podcast on Monday.

“I’ve heard that Kadri’s been very vocal about what he sees going on in Calgary and why the team isn’t firing on all cylinders. And I think he’s been very blunt about just the communication between players and the coach there. I’m betting some of that frustration boiled over in that game on Saturday night. I’m curious to see where this is all gonna go.”

Kadri has 49 points (21 goals, 28 assists) in 72 games under Sutter after registering an NHL career-high 87 points (28 goals, 59 assists) in 71 regular-season games with the Colorado Avalanche a year ago.

He’s averaged 14:48 of ice time in 11 games in March — 12th-most on the team.

The centre logged an average of 17:45 through the first five months of the season, ranking him seventh overall.

“Of course, you want to be out there and contributing and helping the team win,” Kadri said. “I think obviously you become more noticeable the more you’re out there and the more opportunity you get.

As far as everything goes, whenever you do get that opportunity you’ve got to be ready to go.”

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