They may both be Irish, and share the same first name but after that, the similarities end between Patrick O’Sullivan and Pat Quinn.
The Oiler and his coach, unsurprisingly, have differing views on O’Sullivan’s benching for the third period of Tuesday’s game between Edmonton and Los Angeles.
“It’s frustrating and it certainly hurts a little more when it happens against your old team,” the Oilers forward said. “And when you also don’t get feedback on why.”
Once Quinn heard that it didn’t take him long to respond. “Feedback? Doesn’t he hear us talking to him on the bench. He either isn’t listening or doesn’t care and I don’t know which one it is.”
It has been a difficult first full season for the player who was acquired at last year’s trade deadline from L.A. This season he sits sixth in team scoring with 15 points. Yet he went into the game against the Kings on the fourth line.
“It’s been tough because I’ve been up and down the lines and I’ve also been moved positions (centre to wing)," explained O’Sullivan. “So I haven’t really been able to hang onto something.”
O’Sullivan’s comments aren’t what Quinn wanted to hear after seeing players like Sam Gagner and Robert Nilsson go from the last line to a spot on the top two lines.
“If you think you’re being treated like a fourth-liner and you’re a first-liner then there’s a problem and who said he’s a first-liner. Did someone tell him that?” Quinn asked.
The difference between the two Pats definitely turned into a ‘He said, He said’ situation when O’Sullivan expressed a possible reason for his demotion.
“I don’t know maybe it has to do with minuses but I don’t think I was at fault. That’s one of those stats that can be misleading.”
Apparently it’s not misleading but instead leading the coach to this conclusion about O’Sullivan: “What I see is a player who is -13. He may want to look at other parts of his game.”
The 24-year-old’s plus/minus was even through two periods last night but was -1 in the previous four straight games.