February 18, 2013
Nail Yakupov doesn't expect retribution from Kings for celebratory slide

Nail Yakupov slid the length of the ice after scoring in the dying seconds against the Kings on Jan. 24 to send the game into overtime. The Oilers went on to win the game. (Amber Bracken, Edmonton Sun)

EDMONTON - Nail Yakupov said he’s not worried.

“They are not 12-year-olds,” he said of the Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings seeking some sort of retribution.

“They are men. They have families,” he added of the boy in him coming out when he scored with 4.7 seconds left to send the Oilers to overtime where Sam Gagner won it the last time the Kings were here.

Yakupov went bananas in the moment, sliding down the ice on his knees, a moment that has been viewed by hundreds of thousands on YouTube.

But now the question is if the Kings will go bananas back at him as they revisit the scene of the crime?

“I don’t think they will do some crazy thing,” said Yakupov. “I wasn’t doing something bad to the Los Angeles Kings. There’s been a dozen games since then. They need the two points. We need the two points.”

Head coach Ralph Krueger says he’d be flabbergasted if there were any payback incident of any description.

“I can’t even imagine why. I don’t think the