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Claude Julien’s had it with biting and taunting; Lapierre has no comment on being called “punkish”

Jun 6, 2011, 3:25 PM EDT

Claude Julien AP

We know you can’t get enough of the talk about Alex Burrows and his bite of Patrice Bergeron. Since there’s been so much discussion of it thanks to the league not suspending or fining Burrows for it and then Burrows singlehandedly beating Boston in Game 2, it’s become a bit of a talking point at the Stanley Cup finals in Boston.

By “a bit of a talking point” we mean “thing everyone is losing their mind over.” Bruins fans are furious over the lack of action from the NHL while the Canucks are pointing at other things that went on during Game 2 to distract the officials for tonight’s Game 3.

Adding fuel to the fire was Maxim Lapierre openly taunting Patrice Bergeron by sticking his finger in Bergeron’s face mocking him for what happened. So much talk for things not actually playing out with shots and saves can make one go crazy or get really cranky. Consider Bruins coach Claude Julien as part of the latter.  Julien let it rip today during this morning’s press conference.

Q. The biting incidents have taken on lives of their own. I want to talk to you more about Max Lapierre taunting with the finger. What do you think it says about sportsmanship or lack of sportsmanship?

COACH JULIEN: I can’t really talk about their team. I’m going to talk about mine because I don’t handle those players. I don’t deal with those players on a one-on-one basis. It really isn’t up to me to I guess comment on it. If it’s acceptable for them, then so be it. Certainly wouldn’t be acceptable on our end of it. I think you know me enough to know that. Not much I can say on that.

The NHL rules on something. They decide to make a mockery of it, that’s totally up to them. If that’s their way of handling things, so be it. Again, we can’t waste our time on that kind of stuff. We really have to focus on what we have to do. The last time I looked, we’re down two games to none, and all our energy has to go towards that.

Lapierre’s taunting was enough to also make NBC’s Mike Milbury snap off at him during intermission of Game 2 referring to Lapierre as a “punk.”

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As for Lapierre’s take on being called that he was understandably muted.

“What am I going to say to that? I’ve got no comment about that,” Lapierre stated yesterday afternoon upon arrival in Boston.

I guess there’s not much to say when all the talking he’s doing is with his digits. As for Julien’s agitated take on things today, it’s understandable. After all, if you were answering questions all the time about things that had nothing at all to do with what’s going on on the ice that matter to the game, you’d get pretty annoyed as well.

The one thing this whole situation has brought about from the series is some spice. With both teams being as locked in and as focused as they are, the interviews and takes on the game aren’t exactly attention grabbing. For better or worse Burrows’ bite and the lack of response from the NHL followed by Lapierre’s antics have helped make the Canucks more of a heel in this final battle for the Stanley Cup than a hero.

  1. savoirlaire - Jun 6, 2011 at 5:07 PM

    Bergeron is a pussy for not punching Lapierre square in the face…if anybody ever deserved to be decked, it was Lapierre. Shame on Bergeron for putting up with that crap.

    • govtminion - Jun 6, 2011 at 6:49 PM

      That’s exactly the kind of reaction Lapierre was hoping for- because that would immediately result in a Canucks power play if Bergeron was that stupid.

  2. tommytd - Jun 6, 2011 at 5:18 PM

    This is the kind of stuff that occurs when the league doesn’t bother to enforce its own rules. Discipline in the NHL is a joke.

  3. negj - Jun 6, 2011 at 6:21 PM

    This whole thing is such a joke. If you jam your fingers in my mouth, I’ll bite them the fu*@ off!!! Bergeron stuck his fingers in Burrows’ mouth – watch the tape! and Burrows barely bit down. As far as Lapierre, hey wake the f up that’s hockey…always has been. He’s an antagonizer, that’s part of his role. Funny how the “analysts” previously on many occasions throughout the playoffs refer to “agitators” on many teams and that is part of their job on the ice…but when it comes from a team that everyone hates(especially in the studio) all of a sudden it’s “punkish”! Milbury is a talentless hack just like the rest of any NBC organization! Oh yea and he played 12 years for the Boston Bruins, and currently announces for a New England sports network! The bias on NBC/Versus is unbelievable…Jeremy Roenick(former Blackhawk) spewed everything he could to try and wish Chicago to victory(as he did with San Jose). Keith Jones as well, including ridiculing Vancouver backup goalie Corey Scnieder because he pulled a groin trying to stop a penalty shot. Bias, Bias, Bias…but what to you expect from the network that won a election for a certain someone! The fact of the matter is that the NHL will never be as popular as it could be until Gary Bettman(whole nother story) is gone and the contract is pulled from NBC…was the kiss of death to recommit till 2023. Bettman and NBC have NO idea how to market!!! In the meantime I’ll have to continue to watch the bias, and know that it makes the Canucks that much stronger!

    Oh yea and last time I commented about Roenick and Bias on here, it got pulled and so did my account…so I expect the same again! (and I did not use obscene language…just fair criticism)

    • tommytd - Jun 7, 2011 at 6:27 AM

      So “barely biting down” is ok…you’re an idiot, but I agree with you that Bettman should go. He’s bad for the game and his failure to enforce his own rules is eventually going to get somebody killed out there.

      • negj - Jun 7, 2011 at 8:19 PM

        Take it in it’s context you moron! If you can’t understand cause and effect that’s not my problem. and enforcing rules has nothing to do with why Bettman should go…you clearly know nothing about hockey – “killed out there” – oh please, go watch tennis sissy boy!

  4. habsman - Jun 6, 2011 at 9:10 PM

    Absolutely beautiful! Burrows should have been suspanded. But guess what, they couldn’t. Not after all the crap the Bruins got away with for the past couple of months. Theres an old saying: What goes around, comes around. Suck it Boston!

  5. grudenthediva - Jun 6, 2011 at 9:17 PM

    Meanwhile Recchi tries to finger Lapierre in the 1st tonight. What a pathetic bunch of babies.

  6. smilinjaq - Jun 7, 2011 at 12:05 AM

    The Versus/NBC commentators are so Boston biased it is ridiculous. At the end of the game tonight, they repeated the above quote from Julien, “The NHL rules on something. They decide to make a mockery of it, that’s totally up to them. If that’s their way of handling things, so be it”. As if the audience is complete idiots and hadn’t been watching the game. And then when Recchi unfortunately got a goal alte in the game, they fellate him with some homage about “He just goes about his business, celebrates with his teammates, low key, no escalating things.” Completely ridiculous, as Recchi twice participated in the behavior former Bruin player, assistant GM, and coach, Mike Milbury had called punkish when Maxim Lapierre had done it a game earlier. Milbury was right then, but ridiculous to rationalize it tonight as Recchi defending his teammate. The whole commentating crew seemed out to rationalize anything Boston did–as they also defended Krecji doing the same finger waving junk. I’m a WIngs fan who spent my first two years in youth hockey wearing #4 on the Bruins and a signed pic of Bobby Or hangs on the wall here, but this was a pitiful display of unprofessional commentating. I’ve also not heard one commentator highlight the fact that when Burrows did the biting thing he was being held by a ref while the beloved Bergeron was hitting him and was unrestrained. Burrows didn’t have a whole lot of options. RIchard Pryor said that Jim Brown told him he bit guys all the time in the pile because “What is outside the mask belongs to them, but what is inside the mask belongs to me.”

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