January 14, 2009
Romig mentioned this in the Three Stars, but here's the clip complete with Jack Edwards hyperbole on the Versus mic: Boston Bruins goalie Tim Thomas giving Andrei Kostitsyn a shot to the head after the Montreal Canadiens winger earned a boarding major for running Aaron Ward:
Here's Thomas in the Boston Globe on the incident, which earned him a two-minute roughing minor:
"I heard the hit and I saw Wardo down," Thomas said. "The first thing that went through my mind was [Patrice] Bergeron and Andrew Alberts last year.
"Having seen the replay now, it was nowhere near as bad of a hit. But I didn't know that at the time. You just react when you see man down. It's instinct."
So with three straight wins over the Habs, the Bruins have slowly taken the upper hand in this rivalry. Although Dennis Kane felt Montreal's effort against the injured B's was still something the Canadiens can build on:
Boston didn't outplay Montreal, not by a long shot. In fact, the Habs had handfuls of great scoring chances. But they couldn't solve Thomas.
So it's not the end of the world. Montreal waltzed into Boston and showed the Bruins and their fans that this is a team to be reckoned with. And I'm sure everyone knows that it was only because of Thomas that the Bruins won this game.
Here's the question, relevant to the Penguins/Capitals smackdown today: What's the best rivalry in hockey today? Habs/Bruins? Penguins/Flyers? Red Wings/Blackhawks? Something else?