Have yourself a day, Jason Chimera. The Capitals fastest skater – and talker – weighed in on all kinds of topics this morning after Wednesday’s practice at Kettler Iceplex. From Tim Thomas’ penchant for kissing guys with his blocker to the, um, toughness of his team to Nick Backstrom’s suspension. If he was a baseball player, Chimera was 4-for-4 day with a home run, two doubles and five RBI. Or just had a Gordie Howe hat trick, if you want to stick with hockey.
The highlights: Let’s start with Backstrom getting a match penalty for cross-checking Boston forward Rich Peverley on Monday in Game 3 of their first-round Stanley Cup playoff series. And yet Thomas’ blocker shot to the back of Backstrom’s head in Game 2 didn’t draw so much as a penalty, according to Chimera.
“I don’t read the rulebook every night. It’s not like it’s my Bible. But it’s certainly in there,” Chimera said. “It says right there. If you use your blocker as a weapon, it’s a match penalty. That’s just cut and dry. I mean, that’s what it is, and I don’t know how he keeps getting away with that stuff.
That’s Rule 51.3, if you’re so inclined to check. Stick tap to the good folks at Japers' Rink for providing some evidence that Chimera has had his own previous run-in with Thomas.
Chimera, of course, took a pretty bad penalty of his own when he speared Boston’s Brad Marchand in the groin in Game 3. Add that to his hit on defenseman Adam McQuaid in the final regular-season game between the two teams – he was ejected from the game, but not suspended and McQuaid is still out of the lineup – and Chimera is probably not the most popular character in Beantown.
“We did some stupid stuff last game that you can’t do. I mean, we can’t take stupid penalties,” Chimera said. “Mine was a stupid penalty. You can’t do that. No matter how much Marchand’s diving and stuff like that, is embellishing a bit, but you can’t do stuff like that because it’s going to be called. You got to play hard within the whistles. And we don’t have to prove we’re tough to anybody.”
To a man, Washington’s players seem to take offense when questioned about whether they can stand up to the Bruins’ hard-hitting ways. There are some big boys on the Caps, too, they point out. Chimera had an interesting way of getting that point across.
“Yeah, I mean, we’re not a [wimpy] team, or however you want to call it,” Chimera said. “We’ve got guys that can drop the gloves and are not scared to drop the gloves. It’s not that factor. We don’t want to lose guys for five minutes in the box, or for any length of time. Guys can play the game, too. We don’t want to get caught up in that.”
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