Sean Avery did his job on Saturday: He made the Leafs take penalties. It started in the warm-up when Avery goaded Jason Blake, who recently admitted he has cancer, into a skirmish. Darcy Tucker joined the fun. (See end of video.) Minutes into the game, Tucker and Avery dropped the mitts. (See start of video.)
Now it seems that the warm-up skirmish sprouted from unorthodox trash-talk. No one is getting specific but it sounds like this could have been about Blake and cancer. NHL disciplinarian Colin Campbell has pledged to get to the bottom of this war of words…by NOT interviewing Avery, nor Tucker. (Atta boy, Columbo! That’s how you get shit done!)
“It goes beyond just getting under guys’ skin,” Leaf tough-guy Wade Belak told CBC. “I think [Avery] takes it to a personal level and that is what guys hate about him.” Avery has a history with this. In 2005, he started with George Laraque, who is black, allegedly calling him “a monkey.” Avery denied it and was not disciplined. He also called a Denis Gauthier hit “typical of most French guys in our league.” (We sincerely hope that Don Cherry was wearing Depends at the time. Containing a storm of simultaneous pant-pooing and ejaculation is hard work for Egyptian cotton.)
The NHL is dealing with this today, though it’s still impossible to grow a set of nads overnight. Stupid laws of science.