DJ Smith under fire after scratching a former Stanley Cup winner on his special night

Published January 18, 2023 at 8:25 PM

It's reasonable to say that the Ottawa Senators plans aren't coming to fruition.

After signing Claude Giroux and getting Alex DeBrincat, the squad appeared ready to have a legitimate shot at the playoffs.

Unfortunately, they are currently 14th in the East, unchanged as last season.

Since the starting lineup seems to be quite excellent, DJ Smith, the head coach, has received a lot of criticism, and understandably so. They have one of the most dynamic top six units in the league, despite a poor defence and inconsistent goaltending.

Now that Mathieu Joseph has been healthy scratched, DJ Smith has lit the flames of hatred surrounding him.

Joseph is not just one of Ottawa's top bottom-six players, but he would also be facing his brother for the first time tonight in the NHL. Over 50 of Joseph's friends and family will be present due to the historic occasion. Mathieu will, regrettably, be observing from the press box.

Ian Mendes of The Athletic was investigating the situation further and revealed that this was more than simply a hockey move. In essence, this was a punishment issue.

Tried to dig into the Mathieu Joseph situation over past few hours, but all sides quiet right now.

My sense is this isn't a traditional «coach versus player» healthy scratch situation.

I also get the sense this might have something to do with something non-hockey related.

Ruining what should have been a once-in-a-lifetime memory is heartless.

DJ isn't exactly gaining more admirers, if he wasn't already in hot water.
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