With P.K. Subban sitting out a second straight game as a healthy scratch on Saturday, many are beginning to wonder whether the Montreal Canadiens rookie is becoming a distraction to teammates with his flamboyant style of play.
Subban is earning a reputation around the league for being too cocky with his on-ice actions and trash talking, resulting in some players — as well as TV commentator Don Cherry — questioning his attitude. There are now some indications that Subban’s style may be upsetting more than just opposing teams.
“The biggest challenge for every player is not the guys on other teams, it’s your own teammates,” Subban said on Friday. “It’s being well liked by your teammates and being part of the team. It’s a challenge when you’re a rookie.”
Subban was a healthy scratch for Montreal’s 5-1 win over New Jersey on Thursday and sat out again when the Habs defeated the San Jose Sharks, 3-1, Saturday afternoon.
After a game between the Canadiens and Philadelphia Flyers last month, Philly captain Mike Richards addressed Subban’s attitude in an interview with The Team 990 radio station.
“He’s a guy that’s come in the league and hasn’t earned respect,” Richards told the radio station. “It’s just frustrating to see a young guy like that come in here and so much as think that he’s better than a lot of people.
“You have to earn respect in this league. It takes a lot. You can’t just come in here as a rookie and play like that. It’s not the way to get respect from other players around the league. Hopefully someone on their team addresses it, because, I’m not saying I’m going to do it, but something might happen to him if he continues to be that cocky.”