The contentious rivalry between Milan Lucic of the Boston Bruins and Alexei Emelin of the Montreal Canadiens might eclipse that of their respective teams by series end. We’ve only seen the tip of the iceberg here; or, rather, the end of the stick.
According to Chris Johnston of Sportsnet, the Canadiens’ front office is “fuming” – which is far angrier than “steaming” but less angry than “incensed” – over what they feel was another Lucic spear to Emelin, this time a quick jab to his stomach.
Please recall the last time Lucic decides to introduce Emelin to his lumber, in the nether regions:
Right … there.
The play went largely undetected in the third period of Montreal’s 4-2 victory Tuesday night. After carrying the puck into the offensive zone and having it knocked off his stick by Alexei Emelin, Lucic jabbed the Habs defenceman in the stomach with 12:05 remaining in the game. He wasn’t penalized.
Those two players have a long history of run-ins with one another, including a March 24 incident where Lucic speared Emelin between the legs – a play he wasn’t punished for. The NHL then fined Lucic $5,000 in the first round after he viciously speared Detroit Red Wings defenceman Danny Dekeyser between the legs on April 18.
The first spear on Emelin was after a low hit by the Habs player, which prompted Lucic to call him a “chicken” and spear him in the eggs.
Stephane Quintal, who stepped in for Brendan Shanahan as player safety chief, felt at the time that since Lucic hadn’t been warned, he couldn’t be suspended. Now he’s been fined for a spear in this postseason, so the Canadiens obviously feel that any subsequent incidents should require a suspension.
Which is, you know, probably why they decided to get the word out on a largely undetected play the morning after Game 3.
Gamesmanship? In a Bruins vs. Habs series? THE DEVIL YOU SAY?!
The NHL has already ruled against any supplemental discipline for Lucic.
That said, does Milan “I’ve been in the league for seven years, and I think I’ve only done that three times” Lucic have to adjust the tote board?
An aside: Does Lucic own a copy of "Moby Dick"?