Did Alex Burrows intentionally open the door on this hit?

18 Comments

Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun is asking readers about an incident from the Senators’ 2-1 overtime loss in Vancouver last night.

Midway through the first period, Canucks center Maxim Lapierre nailed Ottawa’s Jesse Winchester near the Vancouver bench.

It’s being alleged that Burrows purposely opened the door — the hockey equivalent of pulling the chair out from under someone when they’re about to sit.

“I don’t like it,” Garrioch wrote. “I think Burrows should be suspended. He won’t be, but he should be.”

As Yerdon mentioned in the Morning Skate, Winchester wasn’t pleased with the incident.

“It’s not a safe play,” said Winchester. “I was under the impression my butt was against the wall, the next thing I know I’m through the bench. I couldn’t see behind me, I’m not paying attention to what’s on the bench.”

Burrows offered a slightly different take.

“It was a line change and at the last minute he got hit pretty good there and the door wasn’t closed completely,” he explained to the Vancouver Province. “He’s a Montreal guy and one of my friends so it’s a good thing he didn’t get hurt on the play.”

It’s tough to judge intent, but also tough to ignore Burrows’ and Lapierre’s less-than-pristine reputations. Lapierre’s long been considered one of hockey’s dirtiest players while Burrows is best known for feuding with officials and eating Patrice Bergeron’s finger (this despite the fact he has more goals than Vincent Lecavalier over the last three years.)

They’re two of the big reasons why Vancouver is filed under “Hated, Most” in the NHL Teams Rolodex.