Bruins coach Jim Montgomery calls out the NHL

Montgomery has a bone to pick with the League.



The Boston Bruins are coming off a 5-3 win over the Detroit Red Wings on New Year's Eve at Little Caesars Arena, further bolstering their lead in the Atlantic Division and exacting a bit of revenge after Detroit had defeated them in each of their two previous matchups. 

But the two points in the standings wasn't enough for head coach Jim Montgomery, who took exception to how star players like David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand were treated by the opposition. Additionally, Morgan Geekie was roughed up by defenseman Ben Chiarot after a goal-mouth scrum. 

“I do think though that there was a gameplan to go after Pastrnak and Marchand,” a frustrated Montgomery said after the game.

“I do think that we need to protect the stars in our game,” Montgomery continued. “When guys are getting cross-checked and stuff after whistles, I think that’s something that needs to be important to the league. We’ve seen it several years with [Connor] McDavid. Last year he had several points but the years before, in the playoffs, they allowed people to maul him, and you don’t want to take away the great skill of a McDavid, a Pastrnak, or a Marchand because that’s what this league is about.”

Montgomery isn't alone in this assertion. Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin, who suffered a frightening injury early last month after being knocked unconscious, recently called out the NHL for their inconsistency in policing blows to players' heads. 

“Yeah, that’s a function of it,” Montgomery said. “That all started by someone bodying ‘Pasta’ and no problem with body contact, but when the extra shoves get high and there’s no real reason for it, that’s what we want to clean out.”

Is the NHL doing enough to protect their players, or is Montgomery essentially playing a tiny violin right now when his team once again are the leaders of the division? 

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