"You do not get to talk to Mr. Sakic." - Brett Hull to Sean Avery in 2001
Cool story: Previously-untold Sean Avery/Joe Sakic story shows how NHL veterans enforce on-ice respect | Post-to-Post
It was the 2001-02 season – Sean Avery’s rookie NHL campaign – and his Detroit Red Wings were taking on the defending-champion Colorado Avalanche. Avery’s reputation as a big-time trash-talker already was well established from his formative years in the Ontario League – and when Avs captain and Hockey Hall-of-Famer Joe Sakic lined up near the Wings bench before a faceoff, Avery stood up and yelled at Sakic to get his attention.
However, in the two or three seconds it took Sakic to turn his head toward Avery, Red Wings veteran and star winger Brett Hull stood up, reached around another Detroit player, grabbed Avery by the back of the jersey and unceremoniously yanked him back to the seated position before he could utter another word.
“You do not get to talk to Mr. Sakic,” Hull said.