The Montreal Canadiens earned a decisive 4-0 victory over the Boston Bruins tonight, but before that could become official, things got heated between the two bitter rivals.
A major melee erupted at 19:36, which led to Boston’s Jarome Iginla and Montreal’s Mike Weaver receiving game misconducts. You can view the incident here:
At first glance, it looks like the incident escalated from Boston defenseman Zdeno Chara’s actions, and the way the penalties were assessed (16 Bruins penalty minutes to 12 Montreal) seemed to reinforce the notion that the Bruins were the instigators.
It’s a notion, though, that Bruins coach Claude Julien took exception to.
“All I said was that we’re perceived like the bad guys, and they’re the good guys,” Julien said, per ESPN’s Mike Cole. “When Markov trips Chara and puts his stick between his legs, somebody’s going to react, whether it’s right or wrong, Zdeno reacted and then everything else happened. There was a slewfoot before, Desharnais on Marchand. It was a slewfoot. Those are things we keep talking about that are dangerous in our game.
“It’s a rivalry and there are some things going on on both sides. I’m not portraying ourselves as innocent here, I’m just saying it takes two teams to tangle and that’s what happened.”
The Canadiens certainly seemed eager to pin the blame on Boston with a jab via Twitter. The fans at Montreal’s Bell Centre got in on the action too, throwing white towels at Chara and Bruins forward Milan Lucic as they left (courtesy of The Score’s Katie Flynn):
With both team’s seasons on the line, this intensity should carry over into Game 7.