Hours before the Bruins and Candiens faced off for the first time of the season, team president Cam Neely joined Felger & Mazz for his weekly interview.
The conversation began with questions about the Canadiens’ new penchant for fighting, and whether other teams are trying to emulate the Bruins.
As for this particular game, Neely doesn’t expect a flat one.
“I expect another emotional game,” Neely said. “Montreal’s played a little bit more this week than we have … so for us we’ve got to come out strong and kind of take it to them and put them on their heels a little bit. Having said all that, they’ve played two more games but they’re only one point behind us, so I’m sure that they’re well aware of the standings going into tonight’s game, as we are.”
Neely said he always liked going to Montreal, because the passion was so evident.
“It really is,” Neely said when asked if things are different in Montreal. “As much passion as our fans have for not only our team but the Pats and the Sox and the Celts — you combine all that and [that’s] what happens here in Montreal, because there’s just one pro sports team. And it’s everything to these people here. It’s all day every day. There’s always a lot of passion. I’ve always loved coming up here, I loved coming up here to play, just because the rivalry itself was something to be involved in and special, just like it was when Montreal came to Boston. So for me to come here, especially if you come out of here with two points, it’s a little better feeling.”
Did Cam dislike the Canadiens more than most other opponents?
“Yeah it was very easy for me,” Neely said. “When we grew up in Canada, basically you had the options of watching Toronto or Montreal on Hockey Night In Canada. My dad was a Maple Leafs fan and he really did not like the Canadiens, and so it made it very easy for me to jump into the Boston-Montreal rivalry, let’s put it that way.”
Neely was also asked about the Henrik Lundqvist contract in relation to Tuukka Rask’s, as well as the future of the salary cap.
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