Antti Raanta flirting with career suicide if he rooted against Blackhawks

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Nobody appreciates honesty more than a journalist. We want the truth, unfiltered and uncut.

But some things are better left unsaid, and what Antti Raanta might have said recently is one of them. In an interview with a Finnish newspaper, the goalie allegedly admitted he was rooting against the Blackhawks, then his team, during the playoffs last season.

“I was really hoping Nashville would beat us in four games, and I could get back to Finland,’’ he told Ilta-Sanomat. “I was (so angry) about how Chicago was treating me.’’

Raanta on Wednesday denied making the statement.

“I have never said anything like that,” he told the Sun-Times.

What team would ever trust him now?

According to the Finnish report, Raanta was upset that Scott Darling had jumped ahead of him on the Hawks’ depth chart. He saw it as less about his performance and more about coach Joel Quenneville’s dim view of him.

“I noticed that Coach didn’t like me, (and) in that position it is pretty difficult to fight the windmills,” he said.

If true, none of this would sit well with Raanta’s new team, the Rangers, who acquired him from the Hawks in June. How can they possibly count on him when things get tough?

Anyone who has played team sports understands, on some level, what Raanta might have been feeling during the playoffs. You’re languishing as a third-stringer, you think you should be playing more and maybe you cave in to very selfish thoughts at times. Maybe you think it wouldn’t be so awful if the guy ahead of you breaks his leg. But no one in his right mind thinks of saying that out loud. And saying you wanted your team to lose? Unforgivable.

It diminishes the speaker to about an inch tall, and it makes the audience want to get deloused.


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