BOSTON (CBS) — With the Stanley Cup Final tied up at two games apiece, both the Bruins and Blues are starting to take aim at the officiating in the series. But Boston head coach Bruce Cassidy will have no part in it.
Cassidy first opted not to rag on the officials Monday morning, after Blues head coach Craig Berube spent most of his Sunday afternoon questioning their handiwork. Complaining about the all the calls that have gone against his Blues paid off for Berube, as the Bruins were awarded just two power plays in Monday night’s 3-2 loss in Game 4. The five total power plays awarded on Monday were a big dip from the nine in Game 3, five of which went against the Blues.READ MORE: Food & Wine Names Best Burgers In Every State: See The Top Picks For New England
After Monday night’s loss, it was Bruins forward David Backes taking aim at the officials, saying how differently Game 4 was called compared to Game 3. Cassidy wouldn’t go that far at his Tuesday morning press conference, though he knows exactly what Berube was doing with his comments on Sunday.
“You have the best refs. They go through the process like teams do. They get evaluated and they’re here because they’ve been the best throughout,” said the B’s head coach. “I would expect that they wouldn’t get baited by someone’s comments. They should be better than that if they did. I certainly didn’t expect them to. They call the calls they see.”
Cassidy was still surprised by Berube’s comments, but knew exactly what his fellow head coach was doing when he casually let it be known that the Blues were not fans of all the penalty minutes they were racking up.
“The night before, I found it odd,” said Cassidy. “We killed five power plays and scored on our four. One was on them for a bench minor for a challenge of an offsides. Really, there were a couple they could look at that affected the game. I think it was a bit of a ruse and, like I said, hopefully they didn’t get caught up in it.”
Cassidy’s review on the officials wasn’t as glowing as it has been, and there was one call from Monday night in particular that had him questioning which game the zebras were watching. He took issue with a second period illegal check to the head on Boston defenseman Connor Clifton, which looked more like a solid acting job by St. Louis’ Vladimir Tarasenko than a bump to the noggin by Clifton.
“The call on Clifton was a head-scratcher,” said Cassidy. “Tarasenko went to reverse hit him and I don’t think there was any contact to the head at all, other than his own head, maybe, with him leading with it. That was the only one I was unhappy with.”
The Blues didn’t capitalize on any of their power plays on Monday, which has been characteristic of their special teams play this series. While the Bruins got a short-handed tally from defnseman Brandon Carlo, they also failed to convert on either of their two power play chances, which is where they’ve been able to separate themselves from the Blues.
Officiating or not, Cassidy said the bottom line on Monday night was that the Bruins didn’t make enough plays to win the game.
“At the end of the day, we didn’t play well enough to win. We know that,” he said. “We killed the penalties we were called on and scored a short-handed goal. None of them really cost us. We would have liked to be on the power play a few more times, so that’s going to be on us to work for the calls in Game 5. It’s as simple as that.”MORE NEWS: Phoenix Police Say Foul Play Not Suspected In Death Of Hiker Angela Tramonte Of Saugus
It doesn’t sound like he will, but we’ll see if Cassidy pulls a Berube and throws out some suggestions to the officials in the days leading up to Game 5 on Thursday night.