PHILADELPHIA - Patrick Kaleta says the incident at the Sabres bench involving the Flyers Nik Zherdev in Game 4 “was not intentional.”
But that has not stopped some Buffalo news media types from tagging him with the nickname “The Doorman.”
The incident in question occurred in the third period of Buffalo’s 1-0 victory on Wednesday night when Zherdev and the Sabres’ Cody McCormick were tangled up near the Buffalo bench at the HSBC Arena. Replays show Kaleta opening the door to the bench, causing the Flyers player to dangerously tumble in.
Kaleta was informed on Friday that the famous website Deadspin.com ran a video of the play with the accompanying tag: “This Might Be The Dirtiest Hockey Play We’ve Seen in a While.” It was also featured on the ESPN show “Around The Horn.”
“It probably wouldn’t be getting this much publicity if it wasn’t me,” said Kaleta, arguably the Sabres top superpest. “But in no way was it intentional.
“There was a line change going on. You pop the door open and slide down. You don’t want there to be a too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty.
“I didn’t expect anyone to be in our bench but it was kind of funny. Just because I did it, people think I did it on purpose but I was there and flipped it up and whatever. They were scrumming but you never expect anybody to be there. You’re on a change you pop it open and slide down and let the player come in.
“It’s what you do. You do it so many times you kind of take it for granted.”
The Doorman has spoken.