The traditional end of series handshake that took place after the Montreal Canadiens eliminated the Boston Bruins in Game 7 Wednesday night has taken on a life of its own. More specifically, its painted Milan Lucic in a negative light.
As the seventh-year power forward went down the line, he saved a few words for Habs forward Dale Weise and defenseman Alexei Emelin. And those words didn’t involve any future dinner plans, nor did they exchange cell phone numbers or discuss adding each other as friends on Facebook.
Instead, when NBCSN showed the handshake during the first intermission of the Ducks-Kings matchup, an emotional Lucic was seen in a heated exchange with Weise and Emelin.
Fast forward two days later where Lucic meets with the media to discuss his off-season plans and what went wrong for the Black and Gold. A good majority of the questions, however, were directed about the handshake.
Yet, the 6-foot-4 forward was not in the mood for apologies 48 hours later.
“This isn’t the first time anything like that has happened. It won’t be the last time, either,” Lucic said. “I’m not sorry about it.What happens on the ice, stays on the ice.”
The court of public opinion will continue to weigh in on Lucic’s handshake and non-apology over the next 24 hours or so, maybe even longer. But he won’t let that affect his reputation after Weise made reference to it to the Montreal media after Game 7.
“I don’t think much of the guys that feel the need to go out and do something like that,” said Lucic.
There’s a reason why Lucic is in the National Hockey League. Sure, he’s an emotional guy and loves to get physical. He’s crossed the line on a few instances and has been suspended in the past, also.
But the fierce competitor will look to put this behind him and come back stronger in 2014-15.
“I didn’t make the NHL because I accepted losing or accepted failure,” said Lucic, who will be getting an MRI on his wrist after injuring it during the first period of Game 7. “That got me to this point and made me the player that I am.”
The 34th playoff series between the Bruins and Habs is over and done with. But make no mistake about it. The next time, Lucic exchanges acquitences with Weise and Emelin, it will be done with his antics on the ice, and not through the press.