It didn’t take long for Patrick Roy to make his mark on the NHL as head coach of the Colorado Avalanche.
Always known for his fiery temper in his playing days, Roy got into it with Anaheim Ducks head coach Bruce Boudreau in the final minute of Wednesday night’s Ducks-Avalanche game.
The result was Roy being handed a $10,000 fine by the league, some of which may be in damages to repair the poor stanchion Boudreau nearly took in the head.
The incident stemmed from what Roy perceived as a cheap shot from Ducks defenceman Ben Lovejoy on Avalanche rookie Nathan MacKinnon, where Roy believes Lovejoy went knee-on-knee with a hit with 30 seconds left. There was no penalty on the play, and the volcano within the Avalanche coach erupted.
In case you missed it, video of the fallout can be found below.
Twitter reaction to Roy’s outburst last night has been mixed, with some calling him a disgrace to the game while others joked about Roy being on pace for $820,000 in fines for the season, a number Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban would be impressed with.
However, one Tweet in particular caught my attention, courtesy of Dave Stubbs of the Montreal Gazette.
Stubbs brings up a good point here. Coming into the season, one of the biggest questions surrounding the Avalanche was whether or not Roy’s fiery, sometimes abrasive personality would translate into a successful NHL coaching career. While it’s only been one game, Roy has shown his personality hasn’t changed a bit from his playing days, which means protecting his players the only way he knows how. The end result could well be a rally from the Avalanche, who may now see the lengths to which Roy is willing to go to support them.
It could also serve as a litmus test for Roy to see where his team is at mentally. Remember, this is a similar Avalanche squad to the one called out by Jean-Sebastien Giguere six months ago over planning post-season trips to Las Vegas instead of playing out their remaining games.
Time will tell how the Avalanche respond, but Boudreau was quick to claim Roy crossed a line by chirping his players on the ice, calling it “bush league.”
For his part, Roy branded Boudreau a liar following Avalance practice on Thursday.
“I don’t talk to players, I respect all the players. I’m certainly not going to get too involved in this one, but when you talk about classless – when you’re lying, this is classless,” he said.
Patrick Roy, ladies and gentlemen.
Anaheim and Colorado don’t play again until March 14 at the Pepsi Center, but in the interest of his safety and the absence of Stanley Cup rings, Boudreau may want something to plug in his ear.