There are a handful of hockey players I don’t like. I won’t go into them all now, but things like refusing to play in a city, comments about your own team, and sometimes sucker punching puts you on my hated player list. Hossa was on my list. Sure it doesn’t mean anything to him, but I’ve come to terms with it and may have given up hating him.
More changing of heart after the break.
Let’s start with a brief rundown of Hossa’s career before we get to the hate and the turn around. Born in Czechoslovakia he signed with the Ottawa Senators in 97. The Senators had him play a year with the Winter Hawks before he then played four seasons with them. Then there was the dark time of the lock out. Hossa did what many other players did and played in Europe. His contract with the Senators had expired and he re-upped with a three year deal. They traded him immediately to the Atlanta Thrashers.
He played two seasons in Atlanta, setting a franchise point record. In 08 he was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins. Joining Crosby and Malkin, he was a power house in the playoffs getting 12 goals and 14 assists. In the end it wasn’t enough and the Red Wings won the championship. Hossa’s contract is up; Pittsburg offers him what is believed to be a five year, 45 million dollar contract. But Hossa wants a cup, thinks the Wings will win again, and goes to Detroit for a one year contract. Penguin fans were not happy.
So Hossa is now in Detroit. There are some scary injury moments, but during the season he puts up some impressive numbers. Midseason he even says quoted in the Freepress saying he’d be willing to take less money and for a multiyear contract in Detroit. Then the playoffs roll around. For someone who led the team in goals, his performance was underwhelming. The finals are a rematch against his old team. What does Hossa do? In Seven games he gets three assists, zero goals. The Penguins win and for a second time in 2 years Hossa sees another team lifting the cup.