Hockey fans could probably count on one hand the number of times an in-game interview with an NHL coach on the bench yielded anything but 20 seconds of clichés.
But having watched the Detroit Red Wings and Nashville Predators combine for 22 minutes through two periods in Game 1 of the Western Conference quarterfinals, Red Wings Coach Mike Babcock made his time with Brian Engblom of NBCSN count:
Babcock is correct: The Predators (689 PIM) were the NHL's least penalized team and Detroit (699) were the second-least (and the only two under 700 PIMs). So why the tight officiating from Chris Rooney and Brad Meier? Why, we're sure it has NOTHING to do with Gary Bettman being in the house for Game 1, right?
Babcock had his theory: "The referees are trying to get to Stanley Cup Final like the rest of us. What do you say?"
Is it possible we're going to see an NHL coach fined for a live in-game interview?
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