Photo Credit: NHL.com

Jonathan Dahlén deletes social media due to hateful messages from Canucks fans

Ex-Canuck prospect Jonathan Dahlén is opening up about his time in Utica that led to him being traded to the San Jose Sharks at the 2019 NHL Trade Deadline in exchange for Linus Karlsson.

Following the trade, Dahlen has now been forced to close his social media accounts due to some hateful messages from Canucks Nation.

The 21-year-old conducted the interview with the Swedish publication HockeyNews. While some of the translations may be off, it’s easy to get a basic understanding of what Dahlen is saying.

When it comes to players being harassed on social media, it’s typically always a select few fans who go out of their way to send hateful messages to someone they dislike. It’s usually not a representation of an entire fanbase, but still completely unnecessary and not a good look. Whatever was said to Dahlen, it was was enough to make him delete his accounts on social media.

Dahlen explains how he likely doesn’t have much of a relationship with Canucks fans simply because he hasn’t done many interviews. Most fans just don’t know who he is outside of a name on a prospect list.

“I have not done many interviews, so I find it difficult to get messages from Vancouver fans. They have written very hateful messages and it ended with me removing both Twitter and Instagram. I have try to keep myself in the dark now and am focused on trying to feel a bit better.”

Dahlen tries to explain that he didn’t ask for a trade and it was Vancouver management who ultimately pushed him out of the organization.

“I actually chose not to be traded. I didn’t want to move.”

There have been reports that Dahlen’s agent asked the Canucks for a trade. What Dahlen is saying about how he was treated makes it plausible that his agent did go to the Canucks and ask for a move even if Dahlen never specifically said that’s what he wanted.

“I have had a bit of toughness and measures like that. They have treated me in a way that does not bring out the best hockey player in me or developed me. They have had the wrong approach and that is what I have told the agent. That it is the wrong way to treat me if they want me to develop.”

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Dahlen further details what was happening in Utica that hindered his development.

“There are fantastic teammates and captains in the team, the guys are wonderful but that is the way they try to develop young players. It has had the opposite effect on me and it feels like I have been trampled rather than lifted. Instead of becoming a better hockey player, it has gone in the opposite direction. I have not been able to do anything offensive without being afraid of being benched if I make a mistake.”

Dahlen states the Canucks decided to pull the trigger on a trade once they realized Dahlen was unhappy with what was going on.

“We have tried to get a change on it and finally they sadly guessed that I did not feel so good or that I did not think they treated me properly. So then they chose to pull me off and get something else for me.”

As stated previously, there’s toxicity in most fanbases. It’s unfortunate those who decided to send messages to Dahlen were negative and hateful.

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The winger had 14 goals in 50 games with the Comets this season and has three assists in his first three games with the San Jose Barracuda. Here’s hoping the young forward can develop into a valuable player at the NHL level for the Sharks.

  • Why anyone continues to use twitter is beyond me. All it does is amplify human stupidity and hatefulness.

    It’s a shame Dahlen was forced to do this. No one deserves to be subjected to this kind of garbage – making a lot of money or being a professional with a public profile doesn’t make you any less of a human.

  • Mike Bossy

    I hate whenever stuff like this happens. The only solace I can take from this is that we all know that those idiots who harassed him are a minute minority of our fan base but still, it’s so embarrassing.

  • Jamie E

    “I have not been able to do anything offensive without being afraid of being benched if I make a mistake.”

    This is something I don’t like about Green and I guess it’s something I have to start not liking about Cull. You draft and trade for skill players because they have skill. Do I think professional hockey players need to play a “200 foot game”? Yes. Would I prefer they accomplish that by having the puck in the opponents end most of the night? Also yes.

    Why is it ALWAYS one step forward, two steps back with the Benning regime?

    • bobdaley44

      You think you’ll be in the other teams end if you don’t play a 200ft game? You’ll get cycled to death. It’s the NHL everybody has skill. It’s the other stuff that separates them. No battle no play.

      • Jamie E

        There is a distinction between teaching and demanding good habits away from the puck and coaching the skill and creativity out of a player. When a franchise is drowning in a sea of Granlunds, as Botch describes our flotilla of middle and bottom six forwards and dying for more skill and scoring touch, there has to be greater value placed on players who can move the offensive needle.

    • LTFan

      Jamie E – Agree. It is not an easy job being a professional athlete in any sport. There is always someone out there taking a shot at you. As for what really happened in the Dahlen trade, none of us on this site will ever know the real story. I have been a Jim Benning and Travis Green supporter all along. Now I am beginning to question some of the moves JB is making in acquiring players and TG’s lineups and the constant shuffling of lines. Maybe in an indirect way they are hoping to get the first overall pick with how the team is being handled and performing? It is a subtle tank, but it is working. Currently we are 26th overall and I can see us falling a few more spots before the end of the season.

  • Defenceman Factory

    Is it any surprise. This *is* the city that was shamed by two Stanley Cup riots.

    Many Vancouver Canucks fans are ignorant, angry and frustrated. You only have to look at the hate and vitriol on Canucks Twitter, the Province website and this place to see the overall mentality of many so-called fans. Just sayin’.

  • Wiseguy

    This statement stands out to me and in a strange way makes me happy with our management team. “I have had a bit of toughness and measures like that. They have treated me in a way that does not bring out the best hockey player in me or developed me. They have had the wrong approach and that is what I have told the agent. That it is the wrong way to treat me if they want me to develop.”

    Think of it this way, if the Comets were easy on our prospects giving them all the rope in the world to be offensive while not challenging them on the defensive side of things, does this kind of sound like something the Oilers or Sabres have been doing for years? Serious question.
    You gift players with offensive ability everything and perhaps you get that 10 year losing skid. I look at Pettersson and watch him back check like a beast, knowing not all elite players do this and think maybe this is what our young prospects need to be taught for our long term success?

    I would have liked if dahlen had a better/stronger personality to fight through and learn but since he has stated he doesn’t I am somewhat glad we cut bait on players without the mental fortitude to go the distance, you don’t win cups with this attitude in my opinion.

    • “I would have liked if dahlen had a better/stronger personality to fight through and learn but since he has stated he doesn’t I am somewhat glad we cut bait on players without the mental fortitude to go the distance, you don’t win cups with this attitude in my opinion.”

      I agree 100%. Dahlen didn’t even last 5 months before throwing in the towel. Contrast that attitude with MacEwen, who came to the Canucks with zero fanfare (definitely no support from Canucks Army), worked his tail off over the last 2 seasons to develop a legit two-way game, and was nothing but grateful for getting a taste of the NHL this year.

    • Goon

      There are two options here: Either Dahlen, Palmu, and multiple other prospects are *all* whiners who lack mental fortitude, or there’s something wrong with the Canucks approach to development.

      I think the latter is far more likely than the former.

      • Wiseguy

        I am not sure who the multiple others are but Palmu was/is a long shot prospect at best with just a slight chance to ever make the NHL and Dahlen seemed to be a player whom has called his own shots starting with last year and going back to Sweden.
        I feel we might have an issue with the player more than our management?

        • Goon

          It’s been the modus operandi of this management group to punt any player who expresses any dissatisfaction at all, usually for a downgrade in talent. They did this right from word go by paying the Canadiens to take Zack Kassian off their hands in exchange for the corpse of Brandon Prust. They’ve done it a dozen times since then.

          It’s as though Benning cannot be bothered to manage people, which is a problem since managing people is a big part of what a good GM does. Dahlen expresses concern about the opportunity he’s getting in Utica? Punt him in favour of a much weaker prospect.

          The message from both Palmu and Dahlen this year wasn’t “I’m entitled to be playing in the NHL”, it’s been “I haven’t been given an opportunity to develop or clear communication and goals, and I’m frustrated”. If those concerns are legit, Benning should be concerned and should be getting to the bottom of the troubles in Utica. If those concerns are not legit, he should be communicating with those prospects and assuaging their concerns.

          As for how good the prospects are, I don’t think that has any relevance (except that Benning has gone from a player with a decent shot at the NHL to one with virtually none in the Dahlen trade). I’ve always seen Dahlen in particular as a B+ prospect – a guy with a decent shot at the NHL, but by no means a lock. What’s amusing to me is how many people around these parts were arguing one day that Dahlen deserved a shot at the Canucks, and did a complete about-face the next day and called him an entitled player who would never make the NHL anyway.

          • Wiseguy

            While I understand your argument in a small way you have just helped prove my main point that if players are expressing “dissatisfaction” with their handling this is a fault of management, I say its not.
            I am saying that its about teaching these players how to be complete when your not an A+ prospect that’s gifted a spot. The Oilers, Sabres and even Coyotes not to mention others have to some extent just placed a player in the NHL based on offensive talent alone and have yet to accomplish anything year after terrible year with these players, they never knew the defensive side of the game and were never taught it save for a few.
            My point being teach them in the AHL and if they balk at the teaching then cut bait and let another team take on their issues. I am comfortable with this as the opposite has proven to fail time and time again.

            Did it occur to you that Benning had reached out to several teams on Dahlen and this was the best deal? Would that seem plausible? If so would that mean several GM’s see Dahlen as less than what us fans see?

            For what its worth I was really hoping Dahlen would have a dominate rookie season considering what he did last year and the fact he was entering the AHL as an overage prospect, truly he should have dominated right out of the gate or he wasn’t all “that”.

      • Freud

        Tampa’s farm team is filled with 21 and younger players all in their top 10 in scoring.

        Utica plays them in the 4th line and chases them away.

        Would you go with the best team in the league’s approach or the approach of the team that is dead last over the past 4 seasons?

  • Me

    Jesus people, get a life!
    There is absolutely no reason to get that upset over a marginal NHLer who might never have made the Canucks roster no matter his wishes on the trade issue. Also, if you want the Canucks to do well, then you could show the players what a mature and supportive fanbase we have here, which might encourage them to come to Vancouver instead of scaring them away.
    But mostly, just f^&%ing grow up, will you?

  • IF

    Every player is different and responds differently. I’m not concerned that a couple of prospects found themselves unable to adapt to learning positional play or a two hundred foot game at the minor pro developmental level. Many highly skilled offensive players never figure it out. Nothing to see here folks except for a few low lifes using social media to demonstrate their lack of social skills.

  • Freud

    Probably doesn’t help that Benning and Weisbrod threw Dahlen under the bus with the entitlement excuse.

    We know they slagged him to try and justify a bad situation they created. It’s from the Chiarelli playbook.

    Don’t think Pettersson isn’t making notes on how this team treated Dahlen

      • Beer Can Boyd

        You’re talking about the behaviour of the trolls? Of course not. But this story is getting a bit predictable from this organization. Draft or trade for a high skill guy, use an extremely heavy hand to attempt to bludgeon the “200 foot game” mentality into them, then dump on them publicly when it doesn’t work out. Goldobin and Virtanen were both subjected to a variation on this theme. Although there does seem to be exceptions to the rule. Brock “I’m right here waiting at the red line” Boeser seems to have evaded this gauntlet.

  • Bud Poile

    Behind me here on Bali there is a large crew working on a new housing development.
    Men make ten bucks per day working10 hour days in 35c (shade reading) heat,seven days per week.
    They sleep on dirt floors while both defecating and bathing in a small creek near by.
    Some older men bring their wives and children.
    I have seen developers work a crew 30 days and then refuse to pay them and shut down the development until a whole new crew is brought in and the process starts all over.
    Jonathon’s denials and woes of how hard he says he was done by is testament to his character.

        • Freud

          Bud’s asked by this site to leave this site , but he’s still here lecturing us on character.

          Bud’s constantly whining about these boards not being moderated, and endlessly justifies Benning’s failures and then lectures us on denials and woes of how hard he says he was done by.

          LOL… LOL

  • Burnabybob

    Obviously, it’s idiotic to harass people on social media. Shame on the people who did that.

    But I’m also skeptical of the idea that Benning and Green stifle offensively creative players. Pettersson, Boeser, and Horvat haven’t been stifled. I suspect Dahlen will either learn to play a stronger 2-way game, or he will follow in the footsteps of Hunter Shinkaruk, another player fans accused Benning of mishandling.

  • tru north

    Saddened but not surprised by the social media behaviour of some. No responsibility breeds no respect.
    As far as Dahlen ‘playing the victim’ here with the team as well … he doesit well and IMO proves the Canucks right to trade him. Imagine the gall of the team not treating him as he wanted to be treated. As if the needs/objectives of the team might come before the desires of the individual – his! (heavy sarcasm for that statement)
    After his trade some writer described him as ‘fun loving?’ and posted a video clip of the young stars or training camp where Pettersson was miced up … it was obscure but mid clip, after a fancy passing play resulting in a goal, Dahlen makes a disparaging comment about coaches and asking for defence … Hearing that made me understand and approve of his trade. He needs to grow up and learn to accept responsibility.

  • kermit

    People who do this are cowards. Hiding behind their twitter accounts, much like the way the 2011 rioters thought they could get away with destroying property because the mob made them anonymous. Same profile; young males, teenagers to mid thirties, who have so little going for them that they get pleasure from antisocial behavior.

    • Freud

      GMs who slag a young player and call them entitled after they trade them are cowards. Hiding behind a slag or a dishonest excuse to protect themselves from questioning is cowardly.

      The guys slurping up everything Benning says enable the cowardly behaviours. The same guys that slurp Benning and are certain all these prospects are the problem are the same ones who’ll tell you Benning didn’t really mean it when he called Sutter foundational or that he could turn this team around in a hurry.

      You see, when Benning says something you want to believe, it’s true, when he tells multiple lies, he’s just talking GM talk.

      • Bucket

        Freud, sometimes a manager of a sports team tries to use the media to his advantage. When a manager like Benning makes a comment in the media about Sutter being a foundational player, you have to consider that maybe Benning is issuing him a personal challenge. Maybe Benning is trying to get the best out of him by bigging him up, giving him some confidence and hoping that Sutter answers the challenge by stepping up his game. Maybe Benning is believing in him because sometimes all it takes for a human to succeed is to have someone believe in you! The alternative is that Benning trades for Sutter and then says in the media that he is a bit crap and needs work…. how do you think that might have gone down? With both the fans and the players.

        I would have thought someone who uses Freud as a handle would have a better understanding of psychology.

  • Nuck16

    Well, the general theme when it comes to coaching under the JB era is that young players get benched when they make mistakes, and their subsequent fear of making mistakes more often than not has a detrimental affect on their development.
    In a rebuild, the GM should have most of the say when it comes to which players dress, both on the big club and the farm.
    Once the rebuild is over, then the coach should have full autonomy, on the big club at least.
    That’s the benefit of the Toronto model where the coach is part of the management team…he does things for the long term benefit and not just about trying to get a W every night to try to save his job.

  • Kanuckhotep

    Whatever the story behind the Jonathan Dahlen issue really is the kid does not deserve to be treated like he’s some sort of serial killer or something. Vancouver topographically is a beautiful place but houses probably the most miserable people in Canada which is hardly a secret. And whether he actually wanted out or not there is no excuse for this treatment of him. Famous athletes, musicians, actors et al are not zoo monkeys to throw crap at simply because they’re in the spotlight and their nay sayers aren’t. Stick to hockey, dudes, and not uncalled for personal invective.

  • Locust

    You say harassment is “completely unnecessary and not a good look” yet Canucks Army supports the daily harassment of your readers by trolls and not only do you purposefully do nothing, it appears you actually encourage it.

    Double standard much?

  • EP40MVP

    See i told u all utica has a development issue but all of u peeps kept claiming i was talking BS first mcCann then palmu then goldobin now dahlen all saying theres issues with development here

  • Bucket

    After reading that I have to conclude that Dahlen was never going to be what we hoped he would be. For a young player to come in to this organisation and state that they are doing it wrong, that he knows how best to develop himself, something he couldn’t possibly know until he is fully developed, that screams red flags to me. That is a person who thinks he knows best and more than his coaches and organisation, that means he wont listen. He is also a guy who complains when he doesn’t get his own way and that is a not the type of guy that will battle adversity. That is just a guy who will demand a trade when the going gets tough. It would have happened eventually. Pro sports is about the best of the best and although you might have skill, if you lack the mental aspects and you are only 80% of what a team wants you to be, then you get punted for the next guy who brings the right attitude and wants to improve himself and become 100% of what that team wants. Tough business, but it is the best of the best! When it comes to mentality, Petterson is elite, Dahlen an amateur.