TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — The Chicago Blackhawks pleaded ignorance Thursday about the possibility that right wing Andrew Shaw bit Tampa Bay defenseman Victor Hedman in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.
“I have no idea,” Blackhawks center Antoine Vermette said one day after Chicago won the series opener 2-1 over the Lightning. “I read about that. There was a little question about that. I didn’t see it. I don’t know about it.”
Shaw and Hedman got tangled up late in the first period behind the Tampa Bay net after Hedman pushed Blackhawks star Patrick Kane into the boards just after play had been stopped on an officials’ whistle. After the scrum was broken up, Hedman was seen on the Lightning bench lifting his jersey to show a spot on his side to a team trainer.
Hedman said after the game that it felt like he was bit, but couldn’t say for sure that it did happen.
Neither Shaw nor Hedman were made available by their teams for Thursday’s off-day interview session. The teams will practice Friday before Game 2 on Saturday night.
The NHL looked at video of the scrum, but hasn’t released any additional information about possible discipline.
“I’m not sure about that,” Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said about the NHL review. “I don’t know about that.”
Quenneville got a laugh from reporters after the coach was then asked if he had ever been bitten during his playing days.
“No,” he said with a smile. “Nor did I bite anybody.”
The Stanley Cup Final has been bitten by controversy before: Boston’s Patrice Bergeron accused Vancouver’s Alex Burrows of biting his finger during a scrum in Game 1 of the 2011 series. Burrows wasn’t suspended when the NHL couldn’t find conclusive evidence of a bite.
A year earlier in 2010, Philadelphia’s Daniel Carcillo accused Boston’s Marc Savard of biting his finger. Carcillo now plays for the Blackhawks.
This story has been corrected to show Game 2 is Saturday.
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