Neely backed B’s head coach Claude Julien‘s postgame comments from Sunday, albeit not necessarily as strongly. Speaking on his weekly radio appearance on 98.5 The Sports Hub, Neely spoke out against embellishing, saying it needs to be taken out of the league.
“I don’t care about what team or what player you are, I’ve always disliked it. Always. Always have,” he said on The Felger and Massarotti Show. “I don’t care what team you play for or what player you are, I’ve always hated it. It’s like the boy who cried wolf. Especially when someone gets up in and around someone’s face and they go down, I’m expecting a pool of blood. When you don’t see it, you don’t see a scratch and you find out later the person wasn’t even hit, it’s embarrassing. I’m not specifically saying Montreal, I’m just saying in general I’ve never liked it.”
Julien’s comments have been a hot-button topic in the last couple of days, with fans in Montreal (and Vancouver) jumping to call out the rare instances that the Bruins have dived or embellished in the last few years. Multiple videos are starting to make their rounds on the Internet, with one of them zeroing in on Brad Marchand, who dived a couple of times during last year’s playoff series with Washington.
Neely said that it’s something that the club doesn’t want to stand for, and he also confirmed that while he didn’t speak to Marchand himself, the Boston forward was spoken to about his actions.
“I think if you listen to our coach’s comments and what I said about how I feel about it, I think it’s something we don’t need in our game,” Neely added. “I can certainly understand that when someone gets hurt and is in pain that they go down. But when there’s none of that, I don’t think it looks good for the sport.”