I've titled this post that way just in case the Canucks think they somehow got even this weekend. The Bruins won 5 of the 8 games played last year and the Canucks won this one. All they proved is they have a dangerous power play and on this one day successfully baited the Bruins into giving them 11 of them, which they took advantage of four times. It was still obvious who the better team was and who controlled the game.
Below I'm copying a couple of comments I've made in the midst of a discussion with a friend that turned out so lengthy on my part it might as well be a blog post.
As a Bruin fan who truly believes his team plays tough the right way, I'm pissed at Marchand for taking the focus off that and potentially tainting it. He's becoming a dirty player. I think one more even mildly dirty play will brand him going forward as a dirty player. He's proven he has skills that don't require the dirty stuff to succeed. The play in game 9 was a dirty play and it hurt the Bruins. They win this game otherwise. As of this writing, his punishment hasn't been handed down yet. I won't be disagreeing with whatever it is.
Where I have a problem with Vigneault and Gillis is the hypocrisy, as stated in this piece on NESN.com. I don't think Marchand had the thought that "I'm going to hurt this guy." But he did need to have the thought that "What I'm about to do is illegal and it's illegal because it can really hurt someone." Not that it matters but I have a hard time imagining he knew who it was that was coming at him. The only point there is that Vigneault is trying to make it sound like Marchand did it to pay back Salo because he thinks Salo's a dirty player. It happened so fast I can't imagine he knew who it was that was coming. But that's pretty much irrelevant. He absolutely shouldn't have done it.
It's a regular season game and so losing it to them doesn't really matter, though I wish they hadn't been sucked into that Montreal style baiting. They've done a great job not doing it but this game they didn't.
Everyone knows that the two chippiest teams in the league are Montreal and Vancouver, defined as constant spearing, slashing, biting when the refs aren't looking; and the Bruins have the rep as being the biggest, toughest and least tolerant team regarding that stuff. I do worry about the Bruins losing that high ground.
Another thing: Shawn Thornton is the most respected enforcer in the league. When a fourth liner like Weise tries to hurt a first liner like Horton and engages in a fight, which Horton didn't back down from, Weise better expect to hear from Thornton. The ref is on record as saying that he understood Thornton and Weise were gonna go and told them to wait for the whistle, which is why when that pussy backed off, he went to the box anyway. Today Weise is trying to say he was jawing with and was planning on going with McQuaid. Bwahahaha You had a death wish, so you'd rather fight McQuaid than Thornton? BS Thornton would pound you and that would be it...McQuaid's on a whole other level.
There is a reason that a poll taken during the Cup Finals last year showed that the vast majority of Canadian hockey fans who were not fans of the Nucks were rooting for the Bruins to win. That tells you a lot about how much most hockey fans hate that arrogant bunch of whiners and floppers and cheap shot artists; that a country that loves its hockey and hasn't had a Canadian team win in almost 20 years would root against one of their own.
As for the big brawl that got Lucic a game misconduct: Where we see it starting is with Thornton "slashing" or jabbing at Burrows' skates (and since this is happening as shifts are coming off the ice for both teams, my assumption is that Thornton does this in response to something that happened on the ice but maybe not), whereupon Burrows attempts to jab at Thornton. I don't consider those two things equal but it's fine if you do. Thornton then goes after Burrows, which results in five Canucks coming to Burrows' defense and Lucic, one skate on the bench, one out, decides to join in. Then, of course, the rest of the Bruins on the ice jump in as well but that only happens after it's six Canucks against Thornton (and that's if you don't count the guys on the Canuck bench giving him nuggies.) Somehow out of that Thornton gets a penalty for roughing or instigating and Lucic gets a five-minute game misconduct for coming off the bench, which was later rescinded by the league but the Bruins did unfairly as a result go two men down and lose Lucic for the rest of the game. Where was a six men on the ice penalty for Vancouver or a penalty for third man in, which they had three culprits? The refs saw things differently than I did and I can live with that. I just want to attempt to paint what I think is a fair picture.
The Canucks are a team of instigating rats who run and hide behind the refs when it's time to pay, and the Bruins always make you pay. In so doing, they can appear to be a dirty or overly physical team. If that makes some folks dislike the Bruins, I think they can live with that. I know I can.
PS If you get a chance to listen to Don Cherry's comments about this game, he'll crack you up or piss you off but worth it either way. He's obviously no fan of the Canucks. And I am done now on this topic. I have it off my chest. So feel free, everyone, to comment however you like, agree or disagree. I'll let you have the last word
UPDATE: The punishment for Brad Marchand is now in and I've included Brendan Shanahan's explanation video below. I do have to say that the angles of that incident shown in the below video are different than what I saw watching the game on NESN. The camera angle below which is directly behind Marchand as he approaches Salo sheds a new light on the incident for me. It looks much worse and premeditated than it does from the angles of the NESN cameras. He deserved the maximum of five games.