Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom (19), of Sweden, skates with the puck against Calgary Flames defenseman T.J. Brodie (7) during the third period of an NHL hockey game, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
Earlier this month, Nicklas Backstrom took a blow to the head at the hands of Rene Bourque during the Caps game against Calgary. Backstrom left that game and has yet to return to the lineup.
Bourque has since been traded to Montreal, which means that in a twist of fate the Caps get a chance for revenge on Wednesday. With Backstrom out, it will be up to the rest of the team to defend his honor.
Retribution, if you will.
Chuck Gormley and Alan May sat down to talk about it in this video from CSN Washington. May, as is his obligation, was quite tactful regarding the issue. But if you read between the lines, this game is going to get physical.
Bourque, who received a five game suspension for the hit, is expecting as much.
"I obviously don't feel good about what I did and I apologized for it, but I'm sure they'll be a few guys probably coming after me [Wednesday]," Bourque told Montreal's team site. "It's part of the game and I just need to be prepared for it. I know guys will be looking to make sure they finish their checks against me."
We can assume that the action will include a bit more than “finished checks”.
May also explains why the Caps themselves have wisely remained mum on the subject.