Hours after the Bruins laid an egg in Montreal, losing again to the Canadiens 4-1, it seems that Boston’s captain will now be labeled a dirty Player – at least by the fans in Quebec.
There are a number of questions from that game; but let’s get
to the big story, that is, was it a dirty hit by Zdeno Chara? Did Chara intentionally run Max Pacioretty into the turnbuckle between the benches? Did he know exactly where he was on the ice.
No one but Chara knows what he was thinking as he was
finishing his check, but for me, (no, I have never played professional hockey but have played enough hockey to know what I’m saying) I think it just happened that they were coming upon that part of the rink.
Turnbuckle hits have always been a part of hockey. It’s the nature of playing this beautiful but sometimes dangerous sport.
Ask Brooks Orpik. Ask Ryan Smyth. Ask other pro hockey
players about turnbuckles and open doors. It’s part of the hockey rink geography that you hope never comes into play, but it does!
Look at the video, slow it down, look at still pictures and
anything else. What happened at that moment was
unfortunate, and we all hope that Pacioretty will be O.K.
and soon back on the ice, but let’s calm down. The
turbuckle rarely comes into play, but when it does, it’s not pleasant.
Tyler Ennis of the Sabres also had an encounter with the
turnbuckle at CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh last night.
You might say that I have a different perspective because I’m a Bruins fan, and I’m fine with that. But for those who know me, I’m a hockey fan and have criticized Boston as much as their opponents and have a pretty good objective view, despite my bias.
No, it wasn’t a dirty hit. No, Zdeno Chara is not a dirty player, although most Bruin fans would probably love it if he were.
Now, lets move on from all the hysteria on sports radio
and elsewhere, and focus on the other thing that happened at the Bell Centre.
Not much fight in the Black & Gold as they were beaten in every aspect of the game; skating, forechecking, fighting and the game itself were all big losses for Boston.
From the opening puck drop, you could see that things were not going to go right. What I said in yesterday’s missive is what Montreal did, in fact do. Their skating and speed would be what would do-in the Bruins. Also, the Bruins would have to stay out of the penalty box. They didn’t and the Canadiens made they pay. Twice! And, as mentioned, although Tim Thomas doesn’t have the greatest of stats against Montreal, I don’t know why he
wasn’t in goal, considering the enormity of the “rematch”. Once
again, I go back to the Coach. Yes the Bruins are in a good spot in the playoff seedings, and we shouldn’t be questioning Claude Julien who has gotten them into this position, but some of the decisions before and during the games have me scratching my head. Thomas should have been in net last night period. You’re playing your biggest rival in the Northeast Division. You have a chance to stretch your lead over les Habs to seven points and you don’t put out your best lineup to start the game? Granted,
when you don’t score you can’t win, and the Bruins scored a meaningless goal to break up the shutout. Hmmmmm.
There will be much more made of Tuesday night’s events as the league weighs in on the Zdeno Chara incident. However, the bigger picture, it seems to me, is the Bruins need to figure out why they didn’t show up last night and have scored only 5 goals in their last four games.