In the second period of Game 1, Braden Holtby was whistled for roughing when he shoved Bruins’ forward Chris Kelly out of his crease. It seemed like a pretty tame play for the postseason, but the men in stripes intervened nonetheless.
Well, in the Caps’ Game 2 win against the Bruins, Tim Thomas decided to go medieval on several Capitals. Let’s review, shall we?
Tim Thomas had to deal with Troy Brouwer’s best brick wall impression all night, and it cost him a goal early on. Clearly he was still in a bit of a snit over this when Brouwer once again parked himself in the crease — you can see Thomas kicking at Brouwer and trying to stomp on his skate, and as silly as this looks with all that gear on, it’s a pretty dangerous play.
In the third period, good net presence by the Capitals led to a scrum, and Thomas took advantage of the confusion to lean up and uppercut Nicklas Backstrom with his blocker.
This second play we find particularly objectionable, considering Backstrom’s history with head trauma, and the intent with which the whole team seems to be targeting him. Backstrom got the best kind of revenge by victimizing Thomas for the game-winning goal later, and didn’t seem to be any worse for the wear, but this play was pretty far over the line.
We’re all for feisty goalies, we’ve got the most cantankerous netminder in our system playing this series, after all — all we ask is a little evenness in the way they’re penalized. Tim Thomas is welcome to his little temper tantrums, as long as he has to swallow a penalty right along with them. Neither of these plays were assessed a penalty.
If you thought it was obvious that the Bruins got away with a few tonight though, whoa, back up, you haven’t heard Claude Julien’s side of the story. “The one thing is, this is the second cross-check in two games,” Julien told NESN, referring an Ovechkin cross-check on Seidenberg that went uncalled. “Krejci got cut below the nose by the cross-check in Game 1, and now that one, and there’s absolutely nothing we can do about it except that there’s no call on it, on the play.”
“And then the league has a second opportunity to review it, and you’ve got to let them do their jobs,” Julien continued. “So, those to me are extremely dangerous things that we keep talking about wanting out of the game, and I’ve seen suspensions from that before. But we’ll the let the league take care of it, and we’ll focus on what we have to do to win the next game.”
Poor Bruins. Poor Tim Thomas. It must be so terrible that everyone’s stomping on you with skates, and intentionally hitting you in the head after the whistle. I only hope the Capitals don’t commit an uncalled cross-check next game, those guys are out of control.
Additional reporting by Ian Oland.