LAS VEGAS -- Philadelphia Flyers captain Claude Giroux was absolutely flabbergasted to find out Scott Hartnell was traded Monday morning.
How shocked was Giroux?
He didn't believe it when he woke up to a series of texts from Hartnell saying he had agreed to be traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets for R.J. Umberger and a fourth-round pick.
"I woke up this morning to him texting me and saying he was gone," said Giroux, here for the 2014 NHL Awards Show. "I didn't believe him so I started chirping him, and then I found it was true. It's sad; not a fun day."
Giroux and Hartnell have been close friends since Giroux arrived in the City of Brotherly Love to start his NHL career during the 2007-08 season. They often played on the same line and were inseparable, at times, off the ice.
Now, one of his closest friends is gone, off to a Metropolitan Division rival. Giroux seemed shocked Hartnell would waive his no-movement clause to make the trade a possibility.
"I mean, obviously me and Scott were really good friends for the last few years and it [stinks] for that part of the game," Giroux said. "It's the business side and you can't really control it, so you kind of just have to move on. Obviously, we hope the best for Scott. He's going to Columbus and we are going to play him a lot. That's going to be fun."
But that is in the future. For now, Giroux is trying to come to grips with another huge change to the Flyers, who were eliminated by the New York Rangers in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
"I personally didn't see it coming," said Giroux, who is a candidate for the Hart Trophy and the Ted Lindsay Award. "I heard a lot of rumors and stuff, but I did not believe it. He's a good guy. He's one of the best teammates I have ever had. It's a sad day. He's almost the face of the Flyers. He's a fan favorite everywhere he went. He loved the city and I'm sure it is a tough day for him to put that behind him."