We’re used to coaches passionately defending their players following controversial hits. Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien didn’t do that after Penguins forward Matt Cooke knocked defenseman Adam McQuaid into the boards from behind.
In fact, before Julien seemed to be more focused on what the victims of such hits can do to avoid being hurt in the future.
“And I’ve said it before, and I’m certainly not going to change my mind because it happened to one of our players, but I’ve always said that we have to educate our players to not put themselves in vulnerable positions,” Julien told the Boston Globe. “And I’m not talking necessarily about last night, I’m talking about those kind of things that are happening and right now.
“Because the rule says you can’t hit somebody from behind. Sometimes we take advantage of that rule, and it’s dangerous.
“And in order to make our game better, I think it’s gotta come from both sides. Players gotta understand that there’s somebody coming and don’t put yourself in vulnerable position. But the player hitting, have to be aware of it. And I’ve been an advocate of that a long time and I still believe in it.”
Julien added that he wasn’t “convinced [Cooke’s hit was] a suspendable thing.”
The question of whether or not McQuaid specifically put himself in a vulnerable position was raised with the blueliner.
“I don’t know why anybody would want to put themselves in a [vulnerable] position, or would want [to get hit from behind],” McQuaid said, according to CSN New England. “If that’s the way people saw it, then they’re entitled to their own opinion.”
Furthermore, McQuaid just wants to put this incident behind him going into Game 2 tonight.
“There’s so many things to focus on and get ready for and we just get ready for the next game and that’s it,” he said.