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Milan Lucic expects Sabres to come after him

Nov 22, 2011, 3:41 PM EDT

Milan Lucic Getty Images

Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe spoke with Bruins winger Milan Lucic today in advance of Wednesday’s highly-anticipated Bruins-Sabres tilt.

Not beating around the bush, Dupont asked Lucic if he expected one of the Buffalo players to drop the mitts.

His response?

“Yes. I’m not going to lie…yes.”

Not a surprise, but definitely interesting given Brendan Shanahan has spoken with both GMs — Buffalo’s Darcy Regier and Boston’s Peter Chiarelli — informing them that “awareness will be heightened” for the game. Lucic’s honesty is admirable, even though a “no comment” might’ve been the smarter play.

That said, we’re now left with the following questions for tomorrow night:

— Who takes on Lucic? Buffalo’s most active pugilist this year is Cody McCormick, but he’s day-to-day with an upper-body injury and hasn’t played since Nov. 14. Paul Gaustad, one of the most outspoken Sabres following the Lucic-Miller collision (and one of Miller’s best friends), has fought twice already this year and certainly has the size at 6-foot-4, 230 pounds.

— What will Patrick Kaleta do? If there’s one wildcard in the Buffalo lineup, it’s Kaleta — he’s already been suspended for headbutting and fined $2,500 for a hatchet job on Phoenix’s Derek Morris.

— Will Boston start Tim Thomas in goal? It might not be the worst idea ever to rest your franchise goalie (you know, the guy with a penchant for playing outside the blue ice.) Tuukka Rask only has one start in Boston’s last five games, but Thomas does have a two-game shutout streak going.

— Who will work the game? The officiating crew of referees Ghislain Hebert/Marc Joannette and linesmen Derek Nansen/Mark Shewchyk called the last Bruins-Sabres affair. Hebert was fairly inexperienced as far as referees went (he called his first regular-season game in 2009) and it’s likely a more veteran crew will be assigned to this potentially explosive affair.

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  1. nhlbruins90 - Nov 22, 2011 at 3:51 PM

    Well, yeah, the Sabres will go after him. Unless, of course, they want to lose their jobs. They have to make a statement, and I say they will. So you take the punishment, big deal.

    I would bet that somebody starts it up with Lucic, they have a halfway decent fight, and the ref throws them both out for the game before anything gets out of hand. Everybody gets what they want. Problem solved.

    You could start Rask, reasonably, since the B’s have a big game against the Red Wings on Friday afternoon. However, that might look like we’re being intimidated. We don’t get intimidated! I guess they’ll start Thomas, and ride him again on the NBC show Friday.

  2. cowboys282 - Nov 22, 2011 at 4:05 PM

    Any cheap shots tomorrow will show how spineless the Sabres really are.

    Any other team would have done something the night it happened and Buffalo did nothing. After the fact they realized how bad they looked so now they will try to make up for it.

    If they really wanted to protect their goalie they would have done it the night it happened end of story.

    • bcjim - Nov 22, 2011 at 8:58 PM

      Pfft. That goon dishes out cheap shots every night, imo. Reap what you sow, gooney Lucic. You goon.

  3. anotheryx - Nov 22, 2011 at 4:07 PM

    Perfect answer from Lucic. Now Sabres are forced to do something or they look worse than before, but the problem is Sabres doesn’t have anyone who can go against Lucic, and will look silly regardless.

  4. t16rich - Nov 22, 2011 at 4:27 PM

    Gerbe!!!! He will never see it coming.

  5. 8man - Nov 22, 2011 at 5:35 PM

    Really? I hate to draw that straw. Especially since Lucic knows it’s coming. Really?

  6. haterzgonahate - Nov 22, 2011 at 6:03 PM

    i wonder if Recchi is reading these comments? talk about arrogance.. naw he’s probably taking a nap

  7. dagrande - Nov 22, 2011 at 7:27 PM

    Cheap shot? You mean just like the one Lucic took?

  8. baccusdrunk - Nov 22, 2011 at 7:52 PM

    Why would anybody go after Lucic? You don’t retaliate against the “tough guy” you go after a star player on that team. Elbow for Sequin or somebody else would be the perfect “message” to appease the thugs and the cowards.

  9. rainyday56 - Nov 23, 2011 at 12:24 PM

    Yeah, Bruins better sit Seguin. It’ll be a knee on knee for him for sure. Remember, Av’s served up Steve Moore like so much sushi to prevent a Matt Cooke maiming of Joe Sakic. Can’t serve a big smelly beached whale such as Lucic like sushi – not enough wasbabi to make him palatable. Better to go for the skill player.

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