The animosity between Sidney Crosby and P.K. Subban has only intensified as the 2017 Stanley Cup Final continues, but it finally boiled over into something questionable on the ice in Game 5.
Late in the first period, Crosby and Subban got tangled up behind the Penguins’ net with the Penguins up 2-0. Crosby ended up on top of Subban and lingered over him with his hand over Subban’s helmet. Helpless, Subban endured Crosby pushing his head into the ice over and over again as play continued elsewhere.
(EDIT: Vigilant hockey fans have pointed out that Subban was holding Crosby’s leg. My vociferous counterpoint is thus: okay, sure, fine.)
Both got matching minor penalties for holding, though Nashville coach Peter Laviolette was apoplectic at referees for the perceived leniency toward Crosby. You can see why he’d be upset, especially since referee Brad Meier was right over both of them watching the incident unfold.
"THAT'S ALL F***ING YOU!"— Cristiano Simonetta (@CMS_74_) June 9, 2017
-An enraged Peter Laviolette to Brad Meier after Malkin's goal. pic.twitter.com/UYaD7SiAni
Laviolette was more eloquent after the game in his criticism of the call.
“I don’t understand it. I really don’t understand the call,” Laviolette said, via Puck Daddy’s Greg Wyshynski. “I saw my guy get his head cross-checked into the ice 10 times. I don’t even know what he did, P.K. I’m not sure. I disagree with the call.”
Pittsburgh ended the first period with a 3-0 lead and rising tensions between both sides. Earlier this series, Crosby was accused by Subban of insulting his breath.