ARLINGTON, Va. — Daniel and Henrik Sedin are more lovers than fighters, though that doesn’t stop them from being the subject of plenty of jabs from opposing players and even broadcasters.
The Vancouver Canucks‘ twin forwards were at the centre of a near brawl at the end of their game Monday night against the Florida Panthers. The Canucks and Panthers exchanged words, some punches and plenty of pushing and shoving, but now the Sedins are ready to leave it in the past.
“It’s always great to see a team stick up for one another,” said Henrik Sedin, Vancouver’s captain after practice Wednesday. “We forgot about it right away. It’s not a big deal. There were things said, we won the game, we moved on.”
Daniel Sedin, who scored the game-winner in overtime to snap the Panthers’ winning streak at 12, didn’t identify who made the comments or what was said. He skated over toward Florida’s bench after celebrating with teammates, and when Derek Dorsett started shoving Panthers backup goaltender Al Montoya, tempers flared and almost every player and even coaches got involved.
There were no suspensions or fines to come out of the melee.
“It’s a heat of the moment thing, an emotional game and stuff happens,” Sedin said. “We reacted to one player. We respect that team a lot and what they’ve done, so it was towards one player and that was it.”
But it escalated off the ice partially because Panthers broadcaster and Hall of Fame defenceman Denis Potvin’s comments, which included calling Daniel Sedin a “lowlife.” Potvin issued an apology through the Panthers.
“My choice of words at the conclusion of the Vancouver game on Monday should have been more appropriate,” Potvin said in a statement. “In the passion of the moment and under the circumstances of how the game ended, they came out wrong.”
Sedin said he has largely ignored the attention the situation is getting. He had a chance to do that as the Canucks flew from Vancouver to Washington to start a six-game road trip that begins Thursday against the NHL-leading Capitals.
Washington coach Barry Trotz watched the situation between the Canucks and Panthers unfold and figured it was sparked by opponents wanting to get into the Sedin brothers’ heads.
“In some ways that’s a backhanded compliment, I guess, from other teams that they want those guys off their game,” Trotz said. “They’re terrific players. They think the game at another level. They’ve been productive players for a long, long time. It’s a compliment that teams try to get them off their game.”