Flyers-Canadiens grudge match

Posted: November 22, 2010

L EGENDARY HOCKEY broadcaster Don Cherry has never been afraid to speak his mind. That's why we love him.

Saturday night on the venerable "Hockey Night in Canada" broadcast, Cherry sounded off on Mike Richards' verbal spat with Montreal rookie P.K. Subban. Cherry sided with the Flyers' captain, who said earlier in the week that Subban is "cocky" and hasn't yet "earned respect" to be talking trash like he did last Tuesday during the Flyers' 3-0 loss in Montreal.

The Flyers and Canadiens - who lead the Atlantic and Northeast divisions, respectively - will have their grudge match tonight at the Wells Fargo Center.

"He started this nonsense when he was in Hamilton [of the AHL]," Cherry said. "There's a difference of being cocky - and I love cocky guys - than being disrespectful. He doesn't have to play like this.

"And you know what's a funny thing? It only happens after a whistle. I think he will smarten up. He better smarten up because someone is going to get him."

By the way, P.K. stands for Parnell Karl, in case you were wondering.

Flyers defenseman Sean O'Donnell got a hold of Subban and tossed him to the ice like a rag doll late in the third period of Tuesday's game.

Will Richards and Subban square off to settle the score? After other verbal spats - with Pittsburgh's Matt Cooke and Florida's David Booth - it hasn't taken long for Richards to answer the bell. Against Pittsburgh last month, Richards and Cooke threw down just 6 seconds into the game.

But that's not the only thing that will keep us glued to the tube tonight.

We have a feeling Scott Hartnell may have a few words for Maxim "The Rat" Lapierre. Hartnell said Lapierre tried to strangle him at the bottom of a scrum last Tuesday, saying he "couldn't breathe." Hartnell had visible red marks on his neck the following day.

"He tried to choke me out," Hartnell said.

Oh, and while O'Donnell was on his way off the ice after drawing a 10-minute misconduct, he had a beer thrown on him from the stands.

That would never happen at the Wells Fargo Center . . . Right?

- Frank Seravalli

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