Sean Avery -- the New York Rangers agitator who drew the ire of the Sabres (and their fans) by saying he was "going to hurt them" during their playoff series -- apparently suffered a bigger injury from his own team.
Avery had his arbitration hearing Monday, and the New York Post claims the Rangers berated his play in an attempt to keep his salary down. He was "a reasonably effective player as well as a detriment to the team," management reportedly said. "Avery is not a mature player. He plays, at times, like an individual rather than a member of a team. This is sometimes referred to as an inability to see the ice, and in Avery's case this seems to fit with his overall approach to the game."
In communication with the Post, Avery claimed to be shocked and hurt: "It's hard not to take something like that personally and not to be emotional about it."
That's why teams try to complete deals before arbitration, as the Sabres did with Derek Roy and Nathan Paetsch. For the team, the point of arbitration hearings is to prove the player doesn't deserve the money. Anything goes.
Even though Avery is bummed, he won't be a detriment in the dressing room. Chris Drury has a way of getting through to people.