WILMINGTON, Mass. -- After last June's gauntlet of heated trash-talk, highly physical play, and all the bad blood that comes with a Stanley Cup battle, all signs point to Saturday’s rematch between the Boston Bruins and Vancouver Canucks at TD Garden as more than just another game.
Apparently, Claude Julien didn’t get the memo.
After a short team practice on Friday morning at Ristuccia Arena, the Bruins coach batted away a number of questions about the significance of Saturday's game.
“I don’t think it’s as [significant] as people think it is,” said Julien. “The finals was last year. We did what we had to do and we succeeded in that. ... It’s going to be one of those intense games, but certainly I wouldn’t read into it any more than that.”
Julien also downplayed several questions about the trash-talking between the two teams, including one inquiry about Mark Recchi’s interview with CBS Radio last November. In the interview, Recchi called the Canucks “the most arrogant team I have ever played against” and remarked that he “couldn’t believe their antics.”
When asked about Recchi’s comments, Julien’s response was as cold as the ice his team skates on.
“I don’t think you’re talking to the right person with that kind of stuff,” said Julien. “I really don’t have time for those kind of comments, so we’ll leave it at that.”
The players, however, seemed more keen to the fact that Saturday's contest will have some extra meaning.
“It’s a big two points for us,” said forward Milan Lucic. “It’s a chance for us to be first in the whole league if we win this game, so it’s definitely a big game for us and we’re looking forward to the challenge.”
Lucic , a native of Vancouver, also acknowledged his team’s rivalry with the Canucks, admitting that they certainly aren’t one of his favorite teams.
“It’s safe to say, yeah,” Lucic said. "Just because of the emotional series we went through with them [in the Stanley Cup]. I’m sure if you ask them the same question, they would say the same. It’s just one of those things.”