Michel Therrien

Therrien fumes about Rangers watching a Habs practice


The drama keeps building between the Montreal Canadiens and New York Rangers as they approach Sunday’s Game 4.

If talk of dirty hits, taking advantage of injuries and excessive slashing didn’t stir the pot enough, Canadiens head coach Michel Therrien asked members of the Rangers to stop viewing a Montreal practice, claiming that his opponents broke a “gentleman’s agreement” though not an actual rule.

The Bergen Record’s Andrew Gross explains how the situation played out:

Shortly after the start of the Canadiens’ practice this afternoon at Madison Square Garden, an upset Canadiens coach Michel Therrien asked/demanded that Rangers assistant Ulf Samuelsson not watch his team practice.

After that, Rangers GM Glen Sather came out to watch the Canadiens practice and assistant Dan Lacroix did too, with Canadiens goaltender coach Stephane Waite informing Therrien there were still Rangers’ personnel watching. Afterward, Therrien cited a “gentleman’s agreement” between the playoff combatants to not watch each other’s off-day practices.

Therrien notes that game day is different, but clearly this situation rubbed him the wrong way.

“It’s respect for coaches that want to make adjustments between games,  and it’s always been like that and that’s the way it is,” Therrien said.

There may have been some concern about Habs drumming up enough ire against the Rangers after that heated series against their historic rivals from Boston heading into this conference finals matchup, those concerns can be put to rest.

Really, any doubts about there being some healthy distaste and maybe unhealthy vitriol were probably erased when Chris Kreider collided with Carey Price.

Oilers get Kronwall’d – in more ways than one

Niklas Kronwall
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When someone gets clobbered by Niklas Kronwall, they get Kronwall’d.

(His detractors may insist that the definition require the words “dirty” or “illegal,” but that’s a debate for another day.)

It’s easy to get lost in those thunderous hits and forget that the  Swedish defenseman also brings some skill to the table.

He made a big impact – literally and figuratively – in Detroit’s 4-3 overtime win against the Edmonton Oilers on Friday.

First, the Kronwalling:

Next, Kronwall’s overtime-winner:

It hasn’t always been pretty, but the Red Wings are leaning on guys like Kronwall and Dylan Larkin to stick with it.

Tonight’s win extends their point streak to six games (4-0-2), with five of those contests going to overtime.

Dubinsky – Crosby’s nemesis – gets the last laugh on Friday

Sidney Crosby, Brandon Dubinsky

Brandon Dubinsky isn’t a household name like Sidney Crosby is, yet for all the hype that Crosby vs. Alex Ovechkin gets, Dubinsky is the sort of guy who truly rankles No. 87.

It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.

To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:

The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)

That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:

They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.

Even Dubinsky kind of sort of admits that he may have been in the wrong.


More and more, the Blue Jackets are looking like a nuisance … possibly one that will grind their way to an unlikely playoff berth. They improved to 8-4-0 in November after a disastrous 2-10-0 October.

In other words, there’s at least a chance that we may see these increasingly bitter rivals butt heads in another playoff series.

Eichel’s sweet snipe helps Sabres snap six-game skid

Jack Eichel
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The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.

You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.

That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:

Call this a healthy reminder that Eichel has the ability to change games, something Buffalo fans hope to get used to.

Report: Likely no suspension for Matt Beleskey’s hit on Derek Stepan

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Alain Vigneault went there in comparing Matt Beleskey‘s hit on Derek Stepan to the notorious check Aaron Rome delivered on Nathan Horton many moons ago, but the league seems to disagree.

While Rome sat through that memorable Stanley Cup Final between Boston and Vancouver, it sounds like Beleskey won’t face any further discipline, according to ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun.

In the unlikely event that anything changes, PHT will make note.

The next game between the Rangers and Bruins takes place at Madison Square Garden on Jan. 11. Will these bad feelings linger?