By Allan Muir
Boston coach Claude Julien stepped onto his soap box following his team’s loss to Montreal on Sunday. But instead of railing about his team’s lack of defensive commitment or his captain’s undisciplined play, Julien had an overarching issue that needed to be brought into focus: diving.
“Tonight, as everybody saw, there was a lot of embellishment. This is embarrassing for our game, the embellishing. Right now, they’ve got over 100 power plays so far. Its pretty obvious why. Were trying to clean that out of our game. Its got to be done soon. Because it’s not about tonight. It’s about the game. The embellishment embarrasses our game. Weve got to be better about that. It’s pretty obvious when P.K. [Subban] gets hit, he throws himself into the glass and holds his head. You know what? We start calling those things for embellishment, maybe teams stop doing it.”
Can’t argue with his point. The Habs were flopping like freshly caught mackerel on the dock. Toe Blake must have been spinning in his grave.
Of course, the Canadiens aren’t the only team that dresses a frequent diver or two. And it didn’t take the cheerful folks of the interwebs long to point that out.
And that, as Shakespeare said, is being hoisted with one’s own petard.
None of that changes the accuracy of his point, of course. Diving is a blight that deserves greater scrutiny from the league.
But we can all rest better knowing that Julien’s genuine concern for the integrity of the game will surely lead him to start the cleanup effort in his own locker room.