Jalen Ramsey Angers Hockey Players by Saying He Could Make NHL in 6 Months

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistSeptember 7, 2018

Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey (20) during the second half of an NFL preseason football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Jason Behnken)
Jason Behnken/Associated Press

Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey recently ruffled some feathers in an interview with ESPN's Mina Kimes, and he was so outspoken that he even rubbed some athletes in a different sport the wrong way.

In the profile, Ramsey told Kimes that he has excelled in every sport that he has played other than baseball. That includes, most notably, football and lacrosse. And while he has never given hockey a shot, he is confident that he could make it to the NHL if he trained for six months.

That didn't sit well with professional hockey players, as you could imagine. Some players spend the majority of their upbringing playing the game and never even sniff the NHL. To say he could pick up the sport and perform well enough to reach the best hockey league in the world within six months comes off as borderline disrespectful.

"I think it's insulting to our league," Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel said, per ESPN.com's Emily Kaplan. "For us as players, we've dedicated our lives to be playing in the NHL. To think after six months you could come play arguably one of the hardest sports in the world? I mean, I think it's ridiculous he would say that. It's ignorant."

Eichel was not alone in those sentiments, either.

"I can bet any money in the world and there's no chance he can play in the NHL in six months," St. Louis Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko told Kaplan. "It's impossible. Him saying that ... it de-classes our sport."

Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Seth Jones believes Ramsey would have a hard time just mastering a fundamental of the sport.

"You can't even learn to skate in six months," Jones told Kaplan.

While none of the players Kaplan spoke to were willing to pull a Ramsey and declare themselves ready for the NFL, one NHL player did make his feelings on the subject quite clear.

"I think I'd be about 1,000 percent times better at his position in six months than he'll be at mine," San Jose Sharks winger Evander Kane said.

Ramsey has turned himself into a Pro Bowl cornerback in just two years in the NFL. Even if he believes he could succeed on the ice, he appears to have a long and bright future ahead of him on the gridiron.

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