Pittsburgh Penguins forward Nick Bonino was a Stanley Cup Playoffs hero last year, and he’s come up big for his team again this post-season.
Let’s just say Don Cherry is not a fan.
Cherry was highly critical of Bonino, calling him a “faker” and a “phony guy” for selling a high-sticking call against T.J. Oshie late in Wednesday’s Game 4.
“Look at that phony guy,” he said. “Kids, never ever. We’re Canadians, we don’t do that. We don’t fake injuries. Sure, you’re going to say ‘what about Billy Barber? What about guys falling down?’ We do—you get a little tug, you go down—you shouldn’t, but you do. But we never fake injuries.”
“This guy’s a faker, right from the word ‘go,’” Cherry said. “We’re Canadians, we don’t do it. We wear shirts and ties, we’re not soccer players.”
It’s worth noting here that Bonino, who hails from Hartford, Conn., was not the only player to sell a high-sticking call between these two teams. In fact, Oshie feigned being struck in the face by Bonino during last year’s playoffs, giving us a bit of a case of déjà vu:
Cherry also pointed out what he called “dumb” errors made by Bonino, including two icings from the final minute of Game 4 while the Penguins were on the power play with an empty Capitals net.
“Now, this guy really bugs me … You’ve got the [Capitals] goalie out, he ices the puck and gives them another shot here, right?” Cherry explained, highlighting the plays. “Now he gets the puck again, he ices it again, that’s how dumb he is, and he does it again.”
The Penguins would win the game by a score of 3-2, giving them a 3-1 series lead and a chance to eliminate the Capitals on Saturday night.
“He’s a rag doll. This guy is not a good hockey player, as far as I’m concerned,” Cherry said. “This might be a good rally for Washington—‘we’re going to let this guy beat us out?’ I tell you one thing, kids, you never act like this guy. You never fake an injury. It’s not the Canadian way.”