Sometimes, the 15 to 20 minutes after a game ends isn’t enough time for a player to cool off before speaking to the press. Not when his season has just ended at the hands of a heated rival.
Bruins forward Milan Lucic, the subject of much ire from the Montreal Canadiens, was particularly unnerved when talking with reporters about his team’s efforts against the Habs. But the Canadiens’ jabs at him through the media — questioning the Bruins’ disrespect after a muscle flexing war and sprayed water bottles — only seemed to enrage him more.
Said Canadiens forward Daniel Briere, “We all saw the muscle flexing, the helmet tossing and the water bottle spray. Those are all things we tried to use to our advantage.”
Lucic happened to get into it with Habs forward Dale Weise in the handshake line following the Bruins’ 3-1 loss Wednesday night. Weise, who scored the first goal of the game en route to the Canadiens’ victory, was pretty clear when asked about it that he was fed up with what he perceived as the Bruins’ disrespect and something Lucic had said to him.
“Milan Lucic had a few things to say to a couple of guys,” Weise explained. “You look at a guy like Shawn Thornton, who has been around the league and he plays hard and he plays that role, and he had good things to say to everybody. He won with class and Milan Lucic just couldn’t do that. Well I won’t get into what he said, it’s just poor, it’s a poor way to lose.”
But Lucic wouldn’t bite on that.
[It’s] said on the ice so it’ll stay on the ice,” Lucic said. “So if he wants to be a baby about it, he can make it public.”
TSN analyst Aaron Ward reports that Lucic said “I’m going to [expletive] kill you next year.”
When it came time to broach the subject of Lucic’s alleged disrespect, the Canadiens had apparently gone too far.
“Disrespect, I don’t know what they’re talking about disrespect,” Lucic said, his voice rising as he continued. “Having a goal celebration, what kind of disrespect is that? I’m not going to say anything. I got nothing to say about that.”
It’s going to be a long summer for Lucic, who was particularly upset about the disappointing finish for a team as loaded as the Bruins.
“It sucks. That’s it. It sucks, you know. We had high expectations, we wanted to get back there. We felt like we had a good enough team to win and we didn’t.
“Frustrating? I mean I don’t know what else to say. We lost. We let our fans down when we had a great opportunity with a team like this. Like I said, it’s a tough one to swallow.”
Lucic is going to need some more time before he discusses this one. That 20 minutes after the game wasn’t nearly enough.