Naslund questions lawsuit's motives

Updated: February 23, 2005, 1:58 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Vancouver Canucks captain Markus Naslund claims Steve Moore, blindsided by Todd Bertuzzi last March, is just a journeyman who is seeking a financial "home run" at the expense of the Canucks.

Naslund told the Vancouver Sun that Moore does not have much support among his former Colorado Avalanche teammates. Naslund added: "I've got no respect for him at all."

Markus Naslund
Naslund

Steve Moore
Moore

Naslund's comments come in wake of Moore's civil lawsuit, filed Feb. 15 in a Denver court, that names several Canucks players and officials, including Bertuzzi, as defendants against charges including civil conspiracy, assault and battery. The suit asks for unspecified damages and that the case be heard before a jury.

Moore has not been able to play since the March 8 encounter with Bertuzzi in Vancouver. Moore suffered a cracked vertebrae and has not fully recovered from a concussion. Moore, 26, was not offered a contract by the Avalanche at the end of last season and is a free agent.

Still Naslund, playing in the Swedish Elite League with Avalanche players Peter Forsberg and Dan Hinote, has little sympathy for Moore.

"This is just a guy who's trying to hit a home run [financially]," Naslund told the Sun. "Someone who wasn't good enough to play."

Naslund stressed that he is "not saying what [Bertuzzi did] was right. But if it was me, I'd be doing everything I could to get back and play and show everyone the character I have … instead of trying to sue everyone."

Larry Kelly, Moore's agent, said he was shocked by Naslund's comments.

"I'm really surprised and disappointed that Markus would make a statement like that," Kelly told the Vancouver Province.

"And I can't understand how anybody would question Steve Moore's character when he's conducted himself as he has with what he's been put through."

Kelly contends that Moore is a capable player, citing improved ice time statistics.

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