No Class on Wednesday? The Handshake Protocol of Milan Lucic

by Kolby Solinsky

Editor, White Cover Magazine

LINE - White Cover Magazine

You’ve got to hand it to Milan Lucic…

When he can’t do it with his skill – and Lucic doing anything solely with his skill is a guarantee as iron-clad as hitting one of the last two cups in Beer Pong, so it’s not – he certainly does it with his mouth, and he knows how to turn the cameras his way. Whether its running over Ryan Miller, spearing Danny DeKeyser in the junk, flexing his arm in the middle of an ultimately unimportant Game 5, or being “beyond good” on Granville Street… Lucic is a headline that keeps on giving.

Last night, after the Canadiens tied him to a chair, spun him with their speed, and left him dizzy for seven full games, Lucic compensated for his on-ice flaccidness with an (apparent) threat to Montreal’s Alexei Emelin and Dale Weise, in the post-game handshake.

When Weise was asked about what Lucic said, he simply responded that the Bruins had disrespected his team. (It’s true, after all.)

When Lucic was asked about – told that Weise said Lucic disrespected him – the burly Vancouver bear called Weise a “baby” and hyperventilated in that way his coach, Claudie Julien, does whenever he’s caught with his hand in the cookie jar. The Bruins are very, very good at that sort of thing… the way they go from the bullies to the bullied as soon as the lunch monitor sees.

The irony, of course, is that Lucic would call Weise a “baby” after a Game 7 loss and especially after a handshake where – upon replay review – it seemed the Canadiens were completely content to meet palms and congratulate the Bruins on a season well-played.

But Lucic lingered… he pulled Weise close, in full view of the CBC’s cameras, and clearly whispered something that – at the very least – inspired the hashtag #WhatLucicToldWeise.

And that was Lucic’s problem. It wasn’t saying whatever he said – if anyone out there really believes everything said in the handshake line is gravy and roses, you should probably get back in bed and get back to dreaming.

(Honestly, I agree completely with Milan that what’s said on the ice should, to some degree, remain on the ice. Anything non-racist. But, on Wednesday, Lucic didn’t give Weise much of a choice, did he? The way the whole thing went down – how Lucic instigated the whole thing, physically and verbally – was all Milan.)

(And, more on that… we never blasted Shane Doan when he decided to verbally abused Dustin Brown in their handshake lineup, after the Kings eliminated the Coyotes in 2012. But Shane Doan is SHANE DOAN – a heart-and-soul player loved by everyone, not unlike Jonathan Toews or Teemu Selanne – and most of us think of Dustin Brown like we also think of Lucic. Brown plays with an edge and has a heavy whiff of dirty to his game. Brown had also just taken out Michal Roszival, didn’t get a penalty, and then factored in on Dustin Penner’s series-winning OT tally. So Doan and the Coyotes had sympathy, whereas Lucic didn’t. And Doan didn’t threaten Brown or try to turn the handshake into his own bleeding heart, self-interested travesty, which Milan did.)

It wasn’t that he did it. It was how he did it and it was why he did it. Weise and the Habs owned Lucic for this entire series and Lucic – who the Habs had made a fool of – didn’t own his pathetic play.

Instead, he pounded his chest and flexed his arm a little too early, and then whined and moaned when the Habs returned the serve.

Lucic expects everyone to bow down at the Bruins’ feet, honour them for their Presidents’ Trophy while they slack off in their finale.

Funny, how three years after they played the hungry spoiler to the white-collar Canucks, the Bruins have become just as arrogant and just as blind to their own mirror.

But good on Weise and Emelin, too…

When an elephant balancing on a beach ball threatens to “fu*king kill” you, just toss a mouse on the ground and watch the elephant destroy its own circus.

And Milan is still looking below his feet, either for the mouse or peanuts… whatever will make it a shorter summer.