Joel Quenneville’s posture and demeanor reflected a frustrated hockey coach. Underneath that bushy mustache was a frown. His scowl never moved as he answered questions within the bowels of Joe Louis Arena, which has become his house of playoff horrors.
“We hit the wall there when they disallowed the goal,” Quenneville said to tsn.ca, in reference to Viktor Stalberg’s waved-off goal, courtesy of Andrew Shaw standing in the crease for a goalie-interference ruling. “I disagree with the call. He didn’t touch the goalie.”
Never mind that Quenneville’s team fell behind 2-0. Never mind that the Chicago Blackhawks caught a break on Patrick Kane’s goal, because the play should have been whistled dead when Niklas Hjalmarsson boarded Johan Franzen. Never mind that his line combinations aren’t working, the Hawks are being thoroughly dominated on face-offs, and Jonathan Toews has gone eight straight games without scoring a goal in the playoffs.
“Q” just wants to give excuses.
When asked about goalie Corey Crawford, Quenneville grumbled, “We’re not talking about that right now.”
Now we know why Toews irrationally whined about the referees after Game 2. Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg blanketed Toews like a bee on honey, but it was the referees’ fault, according to Toews. Now we know why Bryan Bickell and Shaw ran around in Tuesday’s third period like goons from Slap Shot.
It all goes back to “Q,” who is feeling the pressure of his Presidents’ Trophy team trailing 2-1 in the series. He is seething. And when “Q” starts seething, sometimes the bottom falls out.
His 2009 meltdown after Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals ranks as one of the best by NHL Network. That’s when Detroit humiliated Chicago 6-1 to take a commanding, 3-1 series lead, but all “Q” wanted to talk about was a roughing call assessed to Matt Walker at the end of the first period.
“I think we witnessed probably the worst call in the history of sports today,” Quenneville told reporters, which sure enough became a $10,000 fine. “They absolutely destroyed everything that was going on, on the ice. They ruined the whole game.”
Umm…no. Maybe Valtteri Filppula’s three points, Zetterberg’s two goals, or Cristobal Huet’s five allowed goals “destroyed” and “ruined” the game for you, “Q,” not a two-minute minor.
Hey, it’s not the first time “Q” has failed to show class against Detroit.
Let’s hark back to March of 2003, when Wings assistant coach Joey Kocur nearly jumped the plexiglass to pound “Q” into smithereens, all because the St. Louis Blues’ goons attacked Wings players, a sign of cry-baby embarrassment after being shelled 6-2.
Scott Mellanby attacked Kris Draper, then Dallas Drake and Ryan Johnson tag-teamed Kirk Maltby during a third period featuring 243 penalty minutes. It was an act of goonery highlighted by this: a 6-foot-4, 215-pound Blues player, who took roughly nine whacks at Tomas Holmstrom from the corner, to the blue line, and harassed him to fight until Luc Robitaille retaliated in defense.
That 215-pound player? Walker. Yes, the same Walker who later played for Chicago and caused the Quenneville meltdown. Funny how that worked out, eh?
Anyway, “Q” thought it was cool to act like a bush-league coach, which caused Kocur to go Bobby Knight and throw a chair on the St. Louis ice surface (allegedly he threw it, because nobody confirmed it). Kocur then yelled several unprintable obscenities, all while “Q” sported the look of an O.J. Simpson lawyer.
“It’s an embarrassment for the league,” Robitaille told si.com.
The scene from Tuesday night’s Game 3 makes sense now, doesn’t it? Bickell picked on Danny Cleary in the final minute and Shaw went “Ron-Artest-style” and started screaming at Jimmy Howard, of all people.
Sometimes a hockey team is a chameleon that resembles the personality of its coach. Maybe the Hawks are channeling the look of “Q,” who is now 3-12 lifetime in the postseason at Joe Louis Arena, which includes nine straight defeats dating back to 2002.
He’s 0-for-5 in playoff series against Detroit, and it darn well looks like 0-for-6 is brewing.
2 replies on “Classless Q strikes again“
After tomorrow night you won’t have to see the Cry Baby’s face until October. It’s hard getting your fourth win on the road. It’s a lot easier at home. See ya in the 3rd round.
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