Henrik Sedin says Florida Panther made inappropriate remark before game-ending melee
Canucks defeat Panthers in OT, ending Florida's winning streak at 12 games
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The Vancouver Canucks defeated the Florida Panthers by a final score of 3-2 in overtime on Monday, ending the Panthers’ winning streak at 12 games.
But a melee at the benches, which featured every player for both teams on the ice pushing and shoving before order was restored, left more questions than answers afterward.
Here are the five takeaways:
WHAT EXACTLY HAPPENED TO START THAT MELEE?
So, that was a situation that could’ve been far worse.
As the Canucks celebrated their overtime goal – Daniel Sedin’s 19th of the season – a melee started in between the benches. Players from both teams spilled onto the ice and it could’ve really gotten out of hand before cooler heads eventually prevailed.
Canucks’ captain Henrik Sedin alleged that a Panthers player – he wouldn’t say who – made comments that were “crossing the line” and were “very” inappropriate.
He wouldn’t specify exactly what was said.
“No, it was nothing towards their team. We have a lot of respect toward them. It was towards one guy and he knows who he is and he acted very inappropriate and that’s something we hear a lot of every game but that was crossing the line,” said Henrik Sedin.
He continued by saying the alleged inappropriate comments were made before the overtime started but he wouldn’t repeat what was said.
“Somewhere you need to draw the line,” said Henrik, adding he didn’t think the league should take action against the player who allegedly made these comments.
Daniel Sedin also said it was just one guy that allegedly made these comments. But again, he was vague, only to say this individual stepped over the line.
As soon as Daniel Sedin scored, he turned to his left and glared towards the Florida bench. That prompted Panthers' colour analyst Denis Potvin to call him a "low life" on the broadcast.
Video of the melee, from Sportsnet’s YouTube channel, shows Canucks’ forward Derek Dorsett going over toward the Florida bench as his teammates are skating off the ice after their celebration.
That’s when the chaos ensued.
“Obviously I think something was said to (Henrik or Daniel Sedin). I was watching the situation from after we scored the goal. I was watching from the side of the pile-up at centre ice and I seen that their back-up goalie (Al Montoya) and (defenceman Alex Petrovic) were having words with Danny – I believe it was, that was skating away,” said Dorsett.
“Petrovic started … squirting water at him so I skated over to intervene and Montoya took a cut at me so I took a cut at him.”
Dorsett says he didn’t hear what the unidentified Florida player allegedly said.
“Obviously something was said. Those are two classy guys that carry themselves very professionally and they don’t get too mad too often and they were pretty mad there,” said Dorsett, referencing the Sedin twins.
There were no penalties handed out at the end of the game. The NHL Department of Player Safety made no announcement as to whether further discipline would be taken.
HE WAS A GOAT LAST WEEK
Jake Virtanen was the ‘goat’ last week.
He returned home to Canada facing a firestorm of criticism following a disappointing showing at the world juniors that culminated with the 19-year-old forward taking three penalties – two in the same sequence – in a quarter-final loss for Team Canada.
On Monday, he earned a matter of personal redemption.
After a strong showing in his return to the Canucks lineup Saturday, Virtanen scored the tying goal – his second of the season – with less than three minutes left in the third period against the Panthers on Monday.
THE FUTURE IS HERE
A continuing point here on the Virtanen goal: Bo Horvat and Sven Baertschi had the assists. The kids, on the ice in a pivotal moment, and they delivered.
Come to think of it, Jared McCann also had a strong game. He didn’t hit the score sheet. But he finished the night with a plus-eight Corsi For rating at even strength and five shots on goal.
ETEM MAKES A SPEEDY DEBUT
Making his Canucks debut, Emerson Etem, using his speed, helped draw two penalties to put his new team on the power play.
In the end, he finished the evening with four shot attempts, including two on goal.
That speed he possesses was a key factor at times Monday, which was refreshing to see because it can be argued the Canucks simply don’t have enough of that.
“It was good to see. He was skating,” said head coach Willie Desjardins.
“One game doesn’t tell you one way or the other but I thought for a first game, it was a good game.”
LUONGO’S STILL GOT IT
Roberto Luongo made the most spectacular save of the night and it occurred on the hottest Canucks’ scorer of late – Bo Horvat.
Taking a perfect pass from Daniel Sedin on a two-on-one rush, Horvat one-timed his shot, but couldn’t beat Luongo, who sprawled to his left and flashed the leather for a terrific glove save.
And the familiar chant of ‘Lu’ rained down from the Vancouver crowd at Rogers Arena.