Found June 12, 2012 on
Fox Sports West:
New Jersey Devils
Los Angeles Kings
LOS ANGELES -- Marty McSorley, you're good.
Same goes for Essa Tikkanen and Roberto Luongo. New Jersey Devils forward Steve Bernier --- with one of the worst-timed and ill-advised checks in NHL playoff history --- has let you all off the hook as Stanley Cup Final goats.
Benier won't get his name on the Stanley Cup hoisted by the Los Angeles Kings for the first time in franchise history at Staples Center on Monday night, but he arguably is the most responsible for the series-clinching 6-1 Game 6 decision.
Lagging far behind the action, Bernier's brutal boarding of Kings defenseman Rob Scuderi drew a major penalty and an ejection. That cleared the way for Dustin Brown, Jeff Carter and Trevor Lewis to score on the five-minute power play that ensued.
"It's going to take a long time to get that play off my mind," Bernier said.
With one swift shoulder midway through the first period, Bernier emerged at the top of the list of finals heels. Bernier surpassed McSorely (illegal stick in Game 2 in 1993 as a member of the Kings' only other final team), Tikkanen (Washington forward who missed open net in Game 2 in 1999 against Detroit) and Luongo (Vancouver goalie who said he didn't get enough credit last year before his team blew a 3-2 Final series lead).
Scuderi left with a bloody nose and lip that required stitches. He returned in the second period.
In the meantime, the Kings seized control of the game and scored as many power-play goals as they had in the first five games of the series combined.
"It was a good feeling because I knew I wouldn't have to score for us," joked Scuderi, the lone Kings player without a goal among skaters with more than three playoff games. "It was great job by the guys on the power play to take advantage. ... It's not the most ideal way to participate in the game."
The timing of the hit was bad on a couple levels.
First, it came in a scoreless game as Bernier's team attempted to even a series after it had dropped the first three games. It also came at a time where head injuries --- in the NHL as in other sports --- have drawn increased scrutiny and more strict discipline.
"In my point of view I don't (think it deserved as harsh of a penalty)," Bernier said. "I know he stayed down. After that, I didn't see anything. Obviously, it's a fast game. There were hard hits all over the ice. You want to help your team win. You don't want to get five minutes and help the team lose."
As the Kings eased to a victory, the Devils continued to lose their composure.
Devils forward Ryan Carter checked Scuderi on top of his own goalie, Jonathan Quick, with 4:37 left in the second period. The collision drew after the whistle drew roughing minor and game misconduct.
David Clarkson drew another game misconduct for the Devils later in the same period. In the third period, Petr Sykora also drew a roughing penalty after a run-in with Kings captain Dustin Brown.
Bernier showered and stayed in the locker room after he was ejected, away from any televisions broadcasting the game. He also hadn't reviewed the controversial hit.
"I tried to listen to the crowd," Bernier said. "It was very hard for sure. I wish I could take that play back, but I can't."
Bernier said several players greeted him in the locker room after he was tossed and tried to console him.
Devils defenseman Bryce Salvador, for one, said he doesn't consider Bernier a goat.
"It's easy to scapegoat," Salvador said. "At the end of the day, they won four games. How they won this game doesn't matter. They just won it. They won four. You have to give them credit for that. ... It's a non-issue. That's hockey. Everything happens fast."
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AROUND THE WEB
Justly or not, Steve Bernier will bear the blame for this one. It seems like in today's sports world it's not enough to crown a hero in victory. There must also always be a goat for the vanquished. Bernier will fill the bill for most. And there's no doubt that his reckless hit from behind that led to a five-minute major and three Los Angeles power-play goals changed the...
<a href="http://www.mogreet.com/moshare/it/" class="moshare-button-hor" data-channel="wordpress-1.2.8" data-message="Steve Bernier violently checked L.A.’s Rob Scuderi into the boards during the first period of Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals. Bernier received a five-minute major penalty for the hit and got thrown out of the game. The Kings...
The Los Angeles Kings look to be on their way to winning the 2012 Stanley Cup and a boarding penalty by New Jersey's Steve Bernier might be the reason why.
It happened midway through the first period of play as Bernier hit Kings defenseman Rob Scuderi against the boards as Scuderi attempted to clear the puck.
Bernier was assessed a five-minute boarding penalty and a...
Steve Bernier received 5 for boarding and a game and while on the penalty kill, the Devils allowed 3 power play goals.
The score at the end of the 1st period is 3-0 LA.
Right wing Steve Bernier and the rest of the Devils' third line did so much good work for the team during the run into and including the Stanley Cup final. But Monday night, after center Stephen Gionta was hit with a questionable check at center ice, Bernier hit defenseman Rob Scuderi into the end boards face-first and, under Rules 41.3 and 41.5, the latter for the blood coming...
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Thank you Steve Bernier
What else needs to be said?
This is the shot heard round the hockey world tonight. This check from behind by New Jersey Devils forward Steve Bernier on Kings Defenseman Rob Scuderi that lead to a five minute major and a game misconduct for Bernier - the Kings pounced on the opportunity and they were able to bury the Devils on the major power play as they got three goals in five minutes - in essence putting...
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