This bit of news may have been buried a bit under the radar over the weekend. Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk is not happy with Pittsburgh Penguins superstar and two-time league MVP Sidney Crosby and he is not shy about sharing his opinion that the league needs to levy a hefty suspension on him.
Melnyk is upset over Crosby causing a serious finger injury to Senators defenseman Marc Methot, one that left his finger bloodied and mangled. The incident occurred during the Senators 2-1 victory over the Pens on Thursday night.
“His finger is destroyed. It’s shattered and he’s out for weeks,” Senators coach Guy Boucher said.
“I see things behind the scenes with what happens with slashes. They’re ugly,” Melnyk said. “They’re just as ugly as Marc’s. But Marc’s was so visible. It was a terrifying thing to look at those pictures. I don’t even want to think about it. It’s that disgusting.”
“I was just trying to get his stick, and I think I caught his finger, judging by his reaction and their reaction,” Crosby said. “I’ve gotten those before. They don’t feel good.”
“We all know who he is. The guy is just beyond belief,” Melnyk said on TSN 1200 Radio in Ottawa on Friday. “You do this kind of stuff, I don’t care who you are in the league, I don’t care if you’re the No. 1 player in the league, you need to sit out a long time for this kind of crap.”
“You do anything that’s almost a certain injury, and I think the only way you do it is you wipe the guy off the map … not one or two games — 10. How about a season for a few of these guys?” Melnyk said. “I mean, really. He takes my guy; I take your guy. That’s my attitude. The guy who creates the injury, they should watch games together for the rest of the season. That’s the kind of attitude I have. There’s no room for that.
“… That’s the only way you do it. You hammer these guys, and you take away their money because they all understand money. And you say, ‘You’re done for 10 games.’ And guess what? You guys aren’t getting anywhere close to winning the Stanley Cup if it’s an elite player on the other side. There’s no room for it in the NHL.”
Crosby’s agent, Pat Brisson, blasted Melynk’s comments, saying there is no place for it in the league.
“In my opinion, a team owner who makes a negative comment about a player outside of his organization should be fined for such action,” Melnyk said. “It’s worse than tampering and against the culture of our game.”
While Melnyck is upset with Crosby, some of Methot’s teammates aren’t, saying it is just a part of the game.
“[Crosby] puts his stick in as [Methot] is trying to shoot the puck in, and unfortunately, it hits his finger,” Sentors captain Erik Karlsson said. “It turns out worse than most other times. Plays like that happen all the time, but I don’t think it was intentional or dirty.”
You can bet that there could be a rivalry brewing between the Senators and Penguins. We’ll have to watch the bet lines on worldwide sites such as pelurit-fi.com to see if betting interest or lines are impacted by this incident.
The next time the Sens and Pens face off will certainly draw a bit of extra interest, more than usual.