Felger and Mazz: Neely on Lucic hit, Miller comments

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Felger and Mazz: Neely on Lucic hit, Miller comments

Ryan Miller is one of the best goalies in the NHL, and has been for quite some time. But his job is done between the pipes. When he -- or any goalie -- leaves the crease, he's no longer in his safety zone.

He found that out the hard way on Saturday night when Milan Lucic slammed into him after he skated out to poke away a puck.

On Monday, after it was determined that Lucic would not be suspended for the hit, Bruins president Cam Neely was asked about it and what he thought of the rule that goalies shouldn't be hit.

"I have no problem -- listen, inside the crease, inside the paint, it makes it hard for someone to drive to the net," Neely told Michael Felger and Tony Massarotti Monday on 98.5 The Sports Hub's 'Felger & Mazz' Show, which is simulcast on Comcast SportsNet. "As you know, if you drive it hard to the net you clip the goalie you're going to get a penalty. I understand that.

"From a certain point, how much can the goalie come out and how much can they play the puck?" Neely said. "Eventually the goalie could I guess come out to the blue line and make plays because nobody's going to touch them."

Neely's history as a player is well-documented, and he was definitely a physical player. It makes sense that his point of view favors the aggressor. And he may have a good point. If the goalie is going to act like a skater, he should be treated like one.

Regardless, Miller was livid at Lucic, and hung around after the game to call Lucic a "piece of expletive" and said he was gutless.

"I feel it's a man that's very frustrated with what happened," Neely said about the comments. "You speak after the game like that you have your emotions running high. So obviously he was pretty emotional after that game."

But isn't that emotion something that usually stays on the ice? You'd think that his teammates would have settled the matter later in the game, but when it came to standing up for their goalie, the Buffalo Sabres were nowhere to be found.

"Maybe he was frustrated with everything that happened from the hit and after that," Neely said, referencing the lack of toughness on the part of the Sabres.

Red Sox celebration quickly washes away walk-off loss

Red Sox celebration quickly washes away walk-off loss

NEW YORK -- It had the potential to be the most awkward celebration ever.

In the top of the ninth inning at Yankee Stadium, before their game was complete, the Red Sox became American League East champions, by virtue of one other division rival -- Baltimore -- coming back to beat another -- Toronto -- in the ninth inning.

That eliminated the Blue Jays from the division race, and made the Sox division champs.

But that ninth inning reversal of fortune was about to visit the Red Sox, too.

Craig Kimbrel faced four hitters and allowed a single and three straight walks, leading to a run. When, after 28 pitches, he couldn't get an out, he was lifted for Joe Kelly, who recorded one out, then yielded a walk-off grand slam to Mark Teixeira.

The Yankees celebrated wildly on the field, while the Red Sox trudged into the dugout, beset with mixed emotions.

Yes, they had just lost a game that seemed theirs. But they also had accomplished something that had taken 158 games.

What to do?

The Sox decided to drown their temporary sorrows in champagne.

"As soon as we got in here,'' said Jackie Bradley Jr., "we quickly got over it.''

From the top of the eighth until the start of the bottom of the ninth, the Red Sox seemed headed in a conventional celebration.

A two-run, bases-loaded double by Mookie Betts and a wild pitch -- the latter enabling David Ortiz to slide into home and dislodge the ball from former teammate Tommy Layne's glove --- had given the Sox a 3-0 lead.

Koji Uehara worked around a walk to post a scoreless walk and after the top of the ninth, the Sox called on Craig Kimbrel, who had successfully closed out all but two save opportunities all season.

But Kimbrel quickly allowed a leadoff single to Brett Gardner and then began pitching as though he forgot how to throw strikes. Three straight walks resulted in a run in and the bases loaded.

Joe Kelly got an out, but then Teixeira, for the second time this week, produced a game-winning homer in the ninth. On Monday, he had homered in Toronto to turn a Blue Jays win into a loss, and now, here he was again.

It may have been a rather meaningless victory for the Yankees -- who remain barely alive for the wild card -- but it did prevent them the indignity of watching the Red Sox celebrate on their lawn.

Instead, the Sox wore the shame of the walk-off -- at least until they reached their clubhouse, where the partying began in earnest.

It had taken clubhouse attendants less than five minutes to cover the floor and lockers with plastic protective sheets. In a matter of a few more minutes, the air was filled with a mix of beer and bubbly.

President of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski wore a goggles and only socks on his feet.

As the spray reached every inch of the clubhouse, David Ortiz exclaimed: "I'm going to drown in this man.''

Defeat? What defeat?