Bellemare is allergic to the answer “yes, but”

DENVER | The NHL has players with fascinating personalities. Pierre-Édouard Bellemare never achieved the status of a big star, but he is distinguished by his unique character and atypical career.

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At 37, Bellemare knows he has a longer road ahead than he has ahead. He still has one season left on his contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning. A latecomer to the Philadelphia Flyers at 29, he will be in his ninth season in the top league in the world.

For several years, the center has been answering questions about its post-hockey plans. He’s been predicted more than once to have a behind-the-bench career.

“It’s funny because I’ve often been asked if I want to be a coach,” Bellemare replied. All of my organizations in the NHL have told me about this topic over and over again. It could come from a coach or an executive. They advised me to tell them about my plans the day I stop playing hockey. I’ve been told many times to end up like this Coach. »

Pierre-Édouard Bellemare during the first game of the Stanley Cup finals last Wednesday in Denver.

“I would be a bit radical”

Bellemare would have the knowledge to pursue this profession, but not necessarily the courage to work with the new generation of players.

“I was never interested in coaching,” he said. I don’t see myself as a coach. My biggest problem is patience. You have to understand that it’s not normal for me to be here in the NHL. I got there by working like an idiot. I’ve hurt myself many times. There is one word I have never accepted and that is the word “but”. »

“Well, if I like me Coach, if I were to teach a player my perspective on the game, I would be afraid that a player would come back to my game with a “yes, but”. I would have trouble there. On the other hand, I have an allergic reaction in my children. It would get worse with players. I like sports, but my biggest problem would be the “but”. As soon as a player tells me “but” after an explanation, I would tell them to get undressed. I would be a bit radical. I won’t be good Coach since I would end up with only two players on the bench. »

Pierre-Édouard Bellemare during the first game of the Stanley Cup finals last Wednesday in Denver.

Against his old formation

After two seasons with the Colorado Avalanche, Bellemare signed a two-year, $2 million contract with the Lightning. He has exactly the same pact as Corey Perry.

As luck would have it, he bumped into his former team en route to the Stanley Cup finals.

“To be honest, I don’t think about it,” Bellemare said. I don’t find it difficult. I stay focused. I’ve lost the final before and I don’t want to experience that feeling again. Unfortunately, I find myself against my old team. But I suspected it might happen. The Avalanche have a good team. Yes, there are friends on the other side. The greatest respect I can show is to give 100% on the ice. »

Colorado won the first two games of this final. That puts Bellemare two more setbacks away from reliving a scenario similar to 2018’s Vegas Golden Knights vs. Washington Capitals.

team secrets

Will Jon Cooper and the Lightning deputies knock on his door to learn more about the Denver club’s secrets?

“Yes they can turn to me but our coaches are so talented. They’ve done a great job of analyzing our rivals since the start of the playoffs. What they will say about the Avalanche will probably be the same vision I can have about the players, the personalities, or the system. You don’t really need me. »

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