Did Boucher play the refs to Bolts' advantage?

Did Boucher play the refs to Bolts' advantage?
May 26, 2011, 9:31 am
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By Joe Haggerty

TAMPA, Fla. -- The Eric Furlatt saga continued in Game 6 after Tampa Bay coach Guy Boucher used his pregame press conference as a bully pulpit to critique the NHL official for his inability to award Tampa Bay with power plays in the recent past.

Boucher said before the game that Furlatt had called 24 penalties against the Lightning and only 9 of them in favor of Tampa Bay. Furlatt had a series of calls against the Bolts early in the game as well, but then fellow ref Kelly Sutherland got involved and questionable calls to Dennis Seidenberg and Rich Peverley led to power-play goals for the Bolts in the second period.

Bruins coach Claude Julien was visibly frustrated about the calls, and frustrated about losing the special-teams battle. The Tampa Bay power play went 3-for-and the Bruins were only 1-for-5 while losing oodles of momentum and energy in the process.

Obviously special teams was a difference maker, said Julien. They scored three goals on the power play and it obviously took us a long time to get the first one. That certainly dictated the game.

Whats more disappointing is the fact that I dont know if I agree with those calls. Hopefully what was said by Boucher in the morning didnt have any impact on the game. If it did, Id be really disappointed. I guess it certainly makes things look even worse. Referees have a tough job to do. Youre allowed to agree or disagree, but theyve got a job to do. But it was something that was tough to swallow.

Joe Haggerty can be reached at jhaggerty@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs