Bruins' Ference flips Montreal fans the bird?

DON BRENNAN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:38 PM ET

MONTREAL - Maybe he was waving to somebody he knew.

Or checking which direction the wind was going.

Or, just maybe, he was telling Habs fans he thinks they're No. 1.

Surely, defenceman Andrew Ference didn't actually give them the finger after his second-period goal at the Bell Centre pulled the Bruins to within one of the Montreal Canadiens Thursday in Game 4 of their first-round playoff series.

Did he? Really?

No, of course Ference didnít.

ďCoach just showed me it (on replay) and it looks awful,Ē he stated right after the Bruins 5-4 overtime win, a comeback that started with Ferenceís fourth goal in 78 career playoff games.

ďI donít know if my glove got caught up ... I can assure you thatís not part of who I am or what I ever have been. It looks awful, I admit it, I completely apologize to how it looks, but you guys have covered me long enough to know thatís not part of my repertoire.

ďI was putting my fist in the air. Iím sorry it does look awful, I just saw it. I donít know what else to say.Ē

You can be sure plenty others will take over from here.

STARTS AND STOPS: The hockey fan in Michael Cammalleri was holding court, as usual, after the Canadiens morning skate. "This first round has been tremendous," the Habs winger said. "(Wednesday) night, it was like, I just want someone to score so I could go to bed. But I ended up not getting to watch either of those games finish because I had to go to sleep. But really, really exciting hockey. As a fan of the game, I think this playoff has been tremendous." Truth is, the Habs-Bruins series was lagging behind in the tremendous category before Game 4. With a night featuring all sorts of twists and turns before ending in overtime, it did some serious catching up ... Three seats to my left in the Bell Centre pressbox is Sports Illustrated's Mike Farber. To his right is Roy MacGregor of The Globe and Mail, and in between us is the Boston Globe's Kevin Paul Dupont. If there's any type of trickle down effect in sports writing, this column should go straight to the Hall of Fame ... The flame bearer kicking off festivities for Game 4 -- former Habs great Henri Richard. Sadly, they just don't come out with nicknames like the "Pocket Rocket" anymore.

BETWEEN PERIODS: For any blame he deserved on Montreal's first goal, Tomas Kaberle made up for it with the blueline-to-blueline pass that sent Michael Ryder in to put the B's on the board ... In the minute and half leading to the TV timeout at the 14:24 mark of the first, the Bruins committed at least four turnovers in their own zone. The crowd whooped it up during the commercial, not realizing Habs centre Lars Eller was going to the box on an interference call. Or maybe the peeps did know. The Bruins power play, which entered the game 0-for-11 in the playoffs, was worse than those numbers make it out to be ... That was Brent Sopel's fourth goal in 68 playoff game. Funny, I would have guessed he had fewer.

POINT SHOTS: They know how to do it in Montreal. During the timeout that followed Carey Price's remarkable third-period glove save off Johnny Boychuk, the video board operator showed the replay about four times. And each time, also showed Price, either at the bench or in his crease waiting for play to resume. As you can guess, the place went wild ... At the $4 million he made his year, Ryder is too costly. But he's only 31, and can still snipe ... The ref didn't call that interference penalty on Dennis Seidenberg with 2:19 left. The crowd did.

FACING FACTS: Chris Kelly wore a full cage to protect a sore and swollen (but, according to doctors, not broken) face, the result of a push-from-behind by Scott Gomez in Game 3 that saw him smack his head on the goal post. Kelly held no grudge against Gomez, who he says he's known for a lot of years and he called a "good clean" player. "It was a hockey play," said Kelly. "I remember thinking thank God I had a visor. Put that in your article. Kids, wear visors." After testing it at the morning skate, Kelly said the cage posed no problems for him. "First time I've worn one since I was 14," he said. "I had fun at 14, and I plan on having fun tonight." Asked if he might decide to keep the cage full-time, Kelly paused, then referred to basketball player "Rip" Hamilton. In the 2005 season, Hamilton broke his nose twice and, after the second time, came back wearing a clear plastic shield to protect it. He wore it while leading the Detroit Pistons to the NBA championship that year, and continues to wear it to this day. "We'll see how tonight goes," said Kelly. He might have to consider going all shield, all the time after assisting on the game-winning goal, scoring the tying goal with 6:18 left in regulation, and adding a first period assist.

SOMETHING BRUIN: A teammate of P.K. Subban's at the 2009 world junior championship in Ottawa, Brad Marchand had just one assist in 20 games with the Bruins last season. Over the summer, he spent a lot of time developing his strength and quickness -- and his maturity. "I worked a lot with psychiatrists to get mentally stronger," he said in the B's dressing room Thursday morning. "I really wanted to be here." To help his cause, Marchand also made a bit of sales pitch to Pete Chiarelli, telling the B's GM he would score 20 goals in 2010-11. Chiarelli says he didn't believe him. "I don't know if I believed it at the time," said Marchand, who scored 21. "I was just trying to say anything I could to get on the team. Thank God I did or he'd hang that over my head." Marchand would go on to have two assists in the second period as the Bruins clawed back from a 3-1 deficit.

C'EST WHAT?: "It's hard, because you feel if I can breathe and eat on my own, I should be playing." -- Habs winger Mike Cammalleri on the trouble players have admitting to injuries that would keep them out of a playoff game.


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