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Canadiens getting as much out of ‘disrespect’ card as they can 05.14.14 at 1:10 pm ET
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Why are the Canadiens obsessed with respect? (AP)

Why are the Canadiens obsessed with respect? (AP)

Teams come up with different ways to psych themselves up for big moments. The Canadiens are using the Bruins’ lack of respect of them — regardless of whether there’s actually a lack of respect — as fuel heading into Game 7.

On Tuesday, it was Brandon Prust, saying that when it came to the Bruins dissin’ his crew, the Habs wouldn’t “stoop to their level.” After Wednesday’s morning skate, Mike Weaver weighed in.

“I think they play the same way, whatever way they’re playing,” Weaver said. “Obviously we’ve got to earn our respect, too. That’s Boston for you.”

It’s all so vague, and at face value, it seems like a team stretching to come up with motivation. Disrespect? The teams don’t like each other, sure, but are the Bruins stealing cabs from Canadiens players around Boston or something?

Perhaps it’s the muscle-flexing, the water-bottle-squirting, the participation in scrums. Much of what happened late in Game 6, which started this whole weird narrative, was the result of a David Desharnais slew-foot and an Andrei Markov stick to Zdeno Chara‘s groin that went uncalled.

So what are the Canadiens talking about when they say they’re being disrespected?

“Well, watch the clips. The whole entire series you can see little things out there,” Weaver said. “But I think that’s their game. Our game is just playing. The other stuff isn’t really a factor.”

Claude Julien said after Game 6 that he wasn’t saying the Bruins were innocent, but said that the idea that the Bruins are the bad guys and the Canadiens are good guys is overstated. Both teams pull stunts, which is true. Shawn Thornton shouldn’t have squirted P.K. Subban, but Subban shouldn’t have put Thornton in a dangerous spot in Game 2.

The mocking has gone both ways. Dale Weise has now mocked the Bruins twice — once by pounding his chest (a Bruins celebration) in Game 3 and once by flexing (like Milan Lucic) in Game 6.

Is that “disrespectful?” Maybe, but who cares? The Weise stuff is hilarious, and it’s more of a “we won’t take any guff” statement than anything else.

There’s an important game to be played Wednesday, and unless bad penalties are taken, manners will have nothing to do with it.

Read More: Brandon Prust, Mike Weaver,
Ugly CBA negotiations? The NHL? Get out of town 08.10.12 at 4:40 pm ET
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Talk of a lockout has already started for Gary Bettman and the NHL. (AP)

Negotiations for new collective bargaining agreements tend to get messy, and NHL CBA negotiations (at least recently), tend to result in lockouts. Unfortunately, the news is that there haven’t been any surprises thus far.

Earlier this week, NHL Players’ Association head Donald Fehr said that a counterproposal to the league’s first offer was forthcoming, with it later being determined that folks can expect it to be delivered next Tuesday. The counterproposal is highly anticipated, as the league’s first offer was shocking — it called for an 11-percent giveback of hockey-related revenue on the players’ part, the end of arbitration, and a five-year limit on contracts, among other stipulations. When the NHLPA asked for more financial particulars before countering, the league buried them with some 76,000 pages of documents from the various teams.

Games technically could have been played if a new agreement wasn’t reached by Sept. 15, the expiration of the current CBA, but on Thursday commissioner Gary Bettman crushed the dreams of any fans hoping for that.

“We reiterated to the union that the owners will not play another year under the current agreement,” Bettman told reporters Thursday. “I re-confirmed something that the union has been told multiple times over the last nine to 12 months. Namely, that the time is getting short and the owners are not prepared to operate under this collective bargaining agreement for another season so we need to get to making a deal and doing it soon. And we believe there’s ample time for the parties to get together and make a deal and that’s what we’re going to be working towards.”

The players didn’t exactly dig any of that chatter. Here’s Henrik Lundqvist‘s reaction, via twitter:

“The @NHL says they won’t play past Sept 15th under current deal. Apparently they don’t like the deal they designed. #CBA #nhlpa2012″

And Brandon Prust‘s:

“Disappointed the League is talking about a lockout before we even give our @NHLPA counterproposal”

The bottom line is that nothing — neither Bettman’s comments or players’ reactions — should be surprising. No CBA by Sept. 15 equals a lockout . The only thing learned thus far is that this will get messy. Unfortunately with the NHL, everyone should have already known that.

Read More: Brandon Prust, Donald Fehr, Gary Bettman, Henrik Lundqvist
Gregory Campbell shows concern for Brandon Prust 10.27.10 at 1:47 pm ET
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In a brief chat with Gregory Campbell following the Bruins’ practice on Wednesday, it came up that it could be seen on twitter that he had called Brandon Prust to apologize for his high-stick that got Prust right around the eye late in the second period of team’s 3-2 loss to the Rangers on Saturday.

Gregory Campbell

Gregory Campbell

“Really?” Campbell asked. “Did he put it on there?”

It was a reporter who had tweeted it, but that, not surprisingly, is Campbell. A quiet guy who isn’t looking for headlines when he does something like check on an opponent after an unfortunate play.

Campbell, who hails from Tillsonburg, Ontario, knows Prust a bit, as Prust is from the nearby city of London. Campbell said the two see each other “out and about” and at golf tournaments during the summer. The B’s fourth-line center said that despite not being “best friends,” he felt it was important for him to offer an apology for the high stick.

“That’s a pretty dangerous thing where you get cut near the eye or on eye, so I just wanted to make sure that he was alright. I’m an honest player,” Campbell said. “I didn’t mean to high-stick him, and I just wanted to make sure he was fine.”

Campbell, who has now picked up two double-minors through six games for high-sticking, said that he is making a conscious effort to avoid seeing a third. He doesn’t want to develop a reputation, and, more importantly, doesn’t want to see anybody get hurt by his doings.

“Of course I don’t want it to happen again. The first two times, I didn’t mean for it to happen. I think the coaches know what kind of player I am, and if you watch the plays, it’s totally unintentional and part of the game.”

Prust went to the hospital after leaving the game on Sunday but was able to play the Rangers’ next game against the Devils.

Read More: Brandon Prust, Gregory Campbell,
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