Former Canadiens coach criticizes Pezzetta's shootout goal celebration

Mar 30 2023, 2:14 pm

Many Montreal Canadiens fans were thrilled to see Michael Pezzetta score the game-winning shootout goal against the Buffalo Sabres on Monday night. His Tiger Williams stick-riding celebration was the cherry on top of a great moment.

Not everyone enjoyed it, though. Former Canadiens coach Michel Therrien, who appeared on the La Poche Bleue podcast earlier this week, had thoughts on Pezzetta’s eccentric celebration.

“You should never humiliate the opponent. That’s a type of humiliation. He should have celebrated his goal in a different way,” said Therrien. “When I was a coach, I often told the players that you have to be humble in victory. For me, the team concept is important.”

He warned that the celebration could upset other players around the league and that on-ice “repercussions” could follow. Therrien explains that if he were still a coach, he would have a long chat with Pezzetta about the incident.

It’s probably worth noting that in his time as coach, Therrien was the one who put an end to Carey Price and P.K. Subban’s iconic postgame celebration. Throughout the 2010s, the duo famously performed the “triple low-five” handshake after wins but were forced to stop per the coach’s request.

“I always like teams that are humble,” said Therrien in 2013 after the celebration was banned. “We have to respect the game. We have to respect the other team, and we have to respect the fans,” added the coach, who was famously hard on Subban.

It’s been 10 years, and Therrien’s views on unique celebrations do not seem to have changed.

Al SciolaAl Sciola

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