MONTREAL — Bruins fans that wanted Andrew Ference to come out and say that he meant to flip off Montreal fans are going to be a little heartbroken.
The veteran defenseman was clearly caught with his left middle finger in the air after he scored Boston’s second goal of the night in their 5-4 comeback overtime win over the Canadiens in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinal series between the hated rivals at Bell Centre.
But after the game, Ference was apologetic.
“Coach just showed me it, and it looks awful,” said Ference, who hadn’t scored a playoff goal since 2001. “I just saw it and I can assure you that’s not part of my repertoire. I don’t know if my glove got caught up. I can assure you, that’s not part of who I am or what I ever have been. So it looks awful, I admit it, I completely apologize to how it looks. You guys have covered me long enough to know that that’s not part of my repertoire.
“I was putting my fist in the air. I’m sorry it does look awful. I just saw it.”
Here’s the video. You be the judge:
The league can impose a maximum fine of $2,500 for an obscene gesture. But earlier this season it took the extraordinary step to suspend James Wisniewski — then of the New York Islanders and now of the Canadiens — for two games for making a gesture at New York Rangers pest Sean Avery.
Regardless of what you believe, Ference will definitely have to explain himself to the NHL front office. However, what Bruins fans want Ference’s meaning to be will never need any explanation.