Skinner quickly dismisses accusations by Bruins

calexander@newsobserver.comJanuary 30, 2013 

— Carolina Hurricanes forward Jeff Skinner took exception Tuesday to accusations that he “slew-footed” Patrice Bergeron of the Boston Bruins during the final seconds of Monday’s game.

The NHL defines slew-footing as “the act of a player or goalkeeper using his leg or foot to knock or kick an opponent’s feet from under him, or pushes an opponent’s upper body backward with an arm or elbow, and at the same time with a forward motion of his leg, knocks or kicks the opponent’s feet from under him, causing him to fall violently to the ice.”

Skinner and Bergeron collided behind the Boston net, and both fell backward. Bergeron was furious after the play, and the Bruins’ Brad Marchand told in Boston on Tuesday that Skinner “slew-foots all the time.”

“I don’t think that’s what happened,” Skinner said Tuesday. “I think (Bergeron) stepped in front of me and we both fell back. I looked at the (video) tape and my hips were open. I don’t know how you can pull somebody back over your leg when your hips are open. I think my left foot was off the ice there and we were both off-balance. We got tangled up.”

Bergeron told the Boston media after the 5-3 victory that he didn’t expect Skinner to be fined by the NHL, noting, “I know he did it, but at the same time I don’t really care what happens.” Marchand was fined $2,500 last season for slew-footing Pittsburgh’s Matt Niskanen.

The NHL took no action on the Skinner-Bergeron play, Canes general manager Jim Rutherford confirmed.

Skinner said he watched the replay six times. “We got tangled up. I don’t know what else to say. He puts his stick across my body and latches on to me and we both fell backward. I really don’t know what I’m supposed to do in that situation.”

Canes coach Kirk Muller said Tuesday he did not see the play nor had he seen replays.

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