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Flyers' Berube calls Crosby, Malkin dirty

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PHILADELPHIA Flyers assistant coach Craig Berube has added fuel to the already raging fire that is his team's rivalry with Pittsburgh, calling Penguins stars Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin "two of the dirtiest players on their hockey team."

The comments Tuesday on CSN Philly Daily News Live came two days after the Flyers and Penguins engaged in a late game line brawl, touched off by a pair of incidents between Crosby and Flyers' Brayden Schenn and a thundering check by Pittsburgh's Joe Vitale on Flyers' Danny Briere.

"They slash, they punch guys in the face, they do all these little things," Berube told CSN Philly. "I got no problem with what Schenn does, and if somebody runs (Crosby) over, that's great, they should run him over. This guy gets away with too much in my opinion, whines to the refs all day and all night, it's a joke."

The Flyers and Penguins meet in the regular-season finale on Saturday and are expected to meet in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Laich guarantees playoffs

WASHINGTON Capitals' Brooks Laich isn't backing down from his Wednesday morning Stanley Cup playoff guarantee.

"I have a belief we're going to be in the playoffs and that's it," Laich told the Washington Post Wednesday afternoon, confirming his earlier radio guarantee. "I don't want to discuss any scenario that we're not. My belief is that we're going to be in the playoffs."

The Buffalo Sabres, who are battling the Capitals for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, aren't convinced.

"We're not playing against him and I don't think he's Mark Messier," Buffalo goaltender Ryan Miller told the Buffalo News, referring to the former New York Ranger captain's Game 7 guarantee in the 1994 Eastern Conference final against the New Jersey Devils. "So I think he's searching for a spark for his team. They should be desperate right now, too, so I just think they're looking for little things."

 

Ice chips

JONATHAN TOEWS is finally travelling with the Chicago Blackhawks, but will miss his 21st straight game with a concussion when they take on the hometown Minnesota Wild tonight, NHL.com reports... Defenceman Carl Gunnarsson is out for the final two games of the season with a separated shoulder, suffered Tuesday when he was checked by Marcus Foligno of the Sabres... Goalie Semyon Varlamov will make his eighth consecutive start tonight in the Colorado Avalanche's crucial matchup with the Columbus Blue Jackets, the Denver Post reports. The Avs could be eliminated from playoff contention today.

 

-- Postmedia News

 

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 5, 2012 C3

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