Nicklas Backstrom's high-sticking penalty on Nick Foligno
Capitals coach Barry Trotz said Nick Foligno’s head snap that resulted in a high-sticking penalty was “a little bit disrespectful to the game,” and Foligno said he was offended by the comments because that’s not the way he plays.
Capitals coach Barry Trotz was frustrated following Washington’s loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday, and rightfully so. A penalty that shouldn’t have been cost the Capitals the game, as Nicklas Backstrom was sent off in the final minutes for a high-sticking minor after his stick came up, but missed, hitting Nick Foligno.
Following the game, Trotz said the head snapping motion by Foligno was something the league should take a look at, stopping short of outright saying it was embellishment by the Blue Jackets’ captain.
"I hope the league looks at that," Trotz said, according to WashingtonCapitals.com’s Mike Vogel. "If you look at it, that's not — you can see on the replay he doesn't really touch him, and [Foligno's] head pops up when Backy's stick is already on the way down…That’s just a little bit disrespectful to the game.”
And after hearing Trotz’s comments, oft-outspoken coach John Tortorella had a simple message for his coaching compatriot: “Quit whining.”
According to the Columbus Dispatch’s Tom Reed, Tortorella said that was all he had to offer on the matter after catching wind of Trotz’s comments.
However, Foligno had more to say when it came to Trotz’s comments, according to Reed. The 29-year-old said he was offended by the remarks because “anyone who knows (him) and knows the way (he plays), that’s probably the furthest thing from (his) mind there.”
Foligno continued by describing what had happened, though it likely didn’t require much explanation. He said that it wasn’t an intentional snap back of the head, but rather reactionary as the stick whizzed past his face.
“It’s unfortunate obviously that the penalty gets called only for the referee,” Foligno said. “I feel bad, but I have had instances when I’ve gotten hit in the face and there’s no call, either. So maybe it’s evening things out.”
And as for Trotz’s call for an embellishment fine, it sure doesn’t sound like Foligno, who has never been fined for diving in his career, will be getting reprimanded by the league.
Want more in-depth features and expert analysis on the game you love? Get 10 issues of The Hockey News magazine for just $15.99!