Jonathan Huberdeau is struggling and reveals personal hardships
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Jonathan Huberdeau is struggling and reveals personal hardships

In a French interview back home, the Flames’ forward opened up about what’s going on.

Chris Gosselin

The Flames still believe in forward Jonathan Huberdeau, who was acquired in a blockbuster trade two years ago. Calgary went shopping on the free agent market last week with the main goal to get him back on the right track offensively, adding Anthony Mantha to the roster. While the move is encouraging for Huberdeau, he still needed to open up about his recent struggles in a French interview with Guillaume Lefrançois of La Presse.

Far from his former club, Huberdeau saw the Florida Panthers hoist the Stanley Cup after he endured another brutal season in Calgary. In the past two campaigns with the Flames, Huberdeau has only put up respectively 55 points in 79 games and 52 points in 81 games. He could only admit that all of this has been adding up on his mind: he shared his personal hardships to Lefrançois and how tough it’s been to see the Panthers as champions during the third edition of his annual golf tournament for la Fondation Cité de la Santé at Le Mirage Golf Course in Terrebonne, Quebec.

(This is translated from French):

“First of all, I’d like to say that I’m happy for the guys, they worked hard. [Aleksander] Barkov, I was with him for years, he works so hard. Aaron Ekblad, Sam Bennett also […] On the other hand, it’s hard to see the guys hoist the Cup. “You tell yourself, ‘I was there 10 years, during tougher times, but that’s how you build a team. When you’re young, you don’t care, you want only to build your career. Now, I’m back in that situation, but a bit older. […]

“It’s obvious that I’m hard to trade. I knew it when I signed the contract, but I didn’t know how it was going to unfold. I thought I was going to put up points, that it would go well, but the more defensive system of play didn’t help. The contract, I know I’m worth that. Several factors didn’t help me, and it’s up to me to get through it. At the age we’re at, that’s what’s hardest part to deal with [to see the team kick off a rebuild]. But there are surprises. We can get into the playoffs, even if everyone sees us as the underdogs. It’s never fun to be rebuilding. When you are young, you can learn, gain maturity and you have time. But at 31, you want to win and you want to win there. It’s harder to swallow, but you have to accept your role 100%.”

The Flames have been struggling and so has Huberdeau. He has only 27 goals and 107 points in 160 games with the Flames and something needs to change, because as he said, there is less time to win the Stanley Cup now.

He needs to stay focused on making the climb again and this time finish the job in Calgary.

Let’s hope opening up about this will help Huberdeau and get him ready for the 2024-25 season.