In Apr. 2011, the Bruins and Canadiens played another in the long history of bitter rivalry games — Game 4 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals, to be exact.
It was a heated affair, like most others, but the big difference this time was a particular goalscoring celebration from B’s defenseman Andrew Ference:
Unsurprisingly, the move set off a flurry of criticisms towards Ference, who responded to the allegations by claiming the act was “an equipment malfunction” and an “unintentional bird.”
I am guilty myself of trying to blame a middle-fingered celebration after a goal in Montreal on a glove malfunction. In round one of the playoffs between two of the fiercest rivals in our sport, I scored a tying goal in the enemy’s building, only to have my fist pump turn into a sign language that crosses all borders.
Facing the media and a possible suspension after the fact proved to be too much for my self-accountability. Self-preservation is a powerful thing… it is easier to place blame elsewhere and overlook your own responsibilities.
And so ends the legacy of the unintentional bird which, I have to say, never caught on like I thought it would. I guess it’s hard coming up with a meaningful catchphrase in today’s society, especially with golden material like “taking my talents to South Beach,” and “that’s a clown question, bro.”