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‘Roughly Translated’: Tatar on arbitration, his relationship with Ken Holland

Tomas Tatar spoke with Sport.sk's Prokop Tomas regarding his contract negotiations with the Wings, and while this is roughly translated, his tone has changed quite a bit:

"An arbitration court is the process that players usually use [to sign a contract]. I don't dislike signing a long-term contract. My agent Rich Winter continues negotiations with the team," Tomas Tatar told us.

The Slovak forward, despite the weaker season in which Detroit didn't play in the playoffs, wants to stay with the team.

"My agent and I have an excellent relationship with Ken Holland. Detroit gave me a chance to start my NHL career. I hope I can continue and improve my team. Detroit is a super organization full of excellent people," continued the Dubinca native, who added, "Despite all the positive things, it's still business, and they won't influence decisions like this. Time will tell. Everything is still peaceful. There's still time to agree."

The arbitration procedure is harder and harder. The team hits on the hockey player's weaknesses, and he argues with his strengths. "Just as the team prepares for such an opportunity, we are also going to do so," Tomas Tatar continued.

The skilled forward has a positive character. He does not want to admit bad, but he has to be mentally prepared before arbitration. "It's a business. When they say something nasty to you, you have to take it over. I know that Ken Holland likes me, but he's also an experienced manager who defends the interests of the owner. Arbitration exists to set a certain bar. The decision will always be somewhere between being fair to both parties. I'll let Rich [Winter] and Kenny do their magic. It's up to them or arbitration. From now on, I no longer want to comment in the media," says the 26-year-old forward of the Red Wings.

The hockey player must also prepare for a similar scenario where the leadership pulls out bad things, but then they must work together again for a common goal. "It's a rather quaint situation, but it's worked in the NHL for a long time. We have to throw it behind our heads and fight for each other. This is essential," empahsized the Dubinca hockey offspring.

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Comments

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Still cant see how some think he sounds unreasonable or disloyal.

Posted by ThatGuy on 07/14/17 at 10:13 AM ET

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Still cant see how some think he sounds unreasonable or disloyal.

Because Tatar never spoke like this in the past, especially to Slovak newspapers.

Posted by VPalmer on 07/14/17 at 10:18 AM ET

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Still cant see how some think he sounds unreasonable or disloyal.

Because people think everyone short of Wayne Gretzky should play for league minimum and have a big smile on their face for the opportunity.

Posted by BarryKlob on 07/14/17 at 10:24 AM ET

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Here is what likely happened…

-Last week Tatar made the comments about the possibility of getting a 1-year deal, which would be his last.

-Kenny of course was not happy, hence the standoffish “No comment” when asked about it.

-Winter is an experienced agent and knows Kenny is pissed. He got a hold of Tatar and told him to shut it. Stop talking. But do one more interview for damage control. Say stuff like you love Detroit, you love Kenny, this is just normal business, then conclude by stating you won’t comment on any of this again.

This is all pretty obvious to me. Winter is a pro at this.

Posted by fatsavage on 07/14/17 at 10:25 AM ET

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Because Tatar never spoke like this in the past, especially to Slovak newspapers.

I don’t ever recall him saying anything disloyal or unreasonable. I remember in his previous contract negotiation, a Slovak paper asked him what he would do if he couldn’t reach a deal with the Wings. He answered honestly and said that the NHL isn’t the only place he can play hockey. Nothing disloyal or unreasonable there. He was given a “what if” scenario, and answered it truthfully. Could he have declined to answer? I guess so. But I don’t think he said anything wrong.

In this current situation, he said in a prior Slovak interview last week that if it gets to arbitration, resulting in a one year deal, it would probably be his last with the team. That doesn’t mean he hates Holland, that doesn’t mean he hates the team, that doesn’t mean anything. Just that those circumstances would probably lead him to play elsewhere. I don’t see how that is disloyal at all. Not everyone thinks that the honor of wearing the Winged Wheel means they should be paid less than they are worth to do so. And that doesn’t make them bad teammates or people.

Posted by Ilovekermit on 07/14/17 at 10:31 AM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

Posted by ThatGuy on 07/14/17 at 11:13 AM ET
Posted by Ilovekermit on 07/14/17 at 11:31 AM ET

Yep, most fans don’t understand the NHL is corporate business, a sport yes, but business with a lot of money for both the team and the player. I have no issue whatsoever with the team and the player using every rule in the book to garner additional juice on their side.

 

Posted by MurrayChadwick from Holland Hate Hyperbole Town (HHHT) on 07/14/17 at 10:45 AM ET

Wings_in_NYC's avatar

Eh why even sweat over this guy? He scored most of his goals when they were meaningless. This whole team is in shambles. At this point, I don’t care who stays or goes.

Posted by Wings_in_NYC on 07/14/17 at 10:48 AM ET

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Posted by Wings_in_NYC on 07/14/17 at 11:48 AM

And he still lead the team.

Listen to KH talk about how valiable franzen is be ause he CAN score even if streaky, like most goal scorers.  Play fantasy, youll see.

Also, we played a quick good passing D in jensen when it dodnt matter either.

Get the puck to Tats, hell score.

Posted by ThatGuy on 07/14/17 at 10:53 AM ET

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I think the biggest problem is that people see “rough translation” and read it as “gospel truth”, when a rough translation is so very, very far from that, ignoring the tone and the nuances of the language.

Posted by BaromirBragr on 07/14/17 at 10:59 AM ET

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I don’t ever recall him saying anything disloyal or unreasonable

I think the issue here is that Tatar always talks to Slovak newspapers saying things that do not sound loyal or at least do not sound good. Tatar openly questioned Cleary signing. Was it unreasonable? Of course not. 90% of this board agrees with him that Cleary contract was awful, but is it correct to express this opinion in the newspapers instead of behind the closed doors? Same with his displeasure he was benched for Sammy. Again, we all agree with him, but maybe the right way would have been to leave behind the closed doors.

He answered honestly and said that the NHL isn’t the only place he can play hockey.

He basically said “if they do not want me, I can play in KHL”. Reasonable, but again, this does not sound good.

if it gets to arbitration, resulting in a one year deal, it would probably be his last with the team.

Again, this is not something you say to a newspaper imo, that’s something you say directly to KH.
Then you have the neighbours complaining about the noise in his appartment. Again, not a big deal in a vacuum, but something like this you never hear about DRW players.
All this info (plus a lot more we are not aware of) accumulates in managements’ heads and leave a negative impression.
And I personally would like Tatar to stay and KH to leave, but I am just commenting on this particular situation.

Posted by VPalmer on 07/14/17 at 11:37 AM ET

TreKronor's avatar

It’s a business. When they say something nasty to you, you have to take it over. I know that Ken Holland likes me, but he’s also an experienced manager who defends the interests of the owner. Arbitration exists to set a certain bar. The decision will always be somewhere between being fair to both parties. I’ll let Rich [Winter] and Kenny do their magic. It’s up to them or arbitration. From now on, I no longer want to comment in the media

This is the most even keeled assessment I’ve read on the situation, and I’m glad to hear this tone from Tatar, for a change.  Assuming the translation is…accurate, of course.

Posted by VPalmer on 07/14/17 at 12:37 PM ET

Well summarized. 

Like the guy, looking forward to watching him for another year.  They’ll just continue to negotiate this a bit, settle at 5 years and 5.5 mil, and all will be good.

Posted by TreKronor on 07/14/17 at 11:57 AM ET

bigfrog's avatar

Like the guy, looking forward to watching him for another year.  They’ll just continue to negotiate this a bit, settle at 5 years and 5.5 mil, and all will be good.

They may settle at the figure and term to avoid arbitration. We will know sometime before July 20th, I think. If not it does look like Tatar will be a goner during the season. tongue wink

Posted by bigfrog on 07/14/17 at 06:22 PM ET

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When you get along with the GM you file for arbitration removing the possibility of an offer sheet from other teams.  When you don’t get along you make the GM file for arbitration.  Ask Petr he’ll tell ya.

Posted by Ventr on 07/14/17 at 08:50 PM ET

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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.

 

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