WASHINGTON -- Count Tampa Bay Lightning center Vincent Lecavalier among those who are upset over the lobbyists in the nation's capital.
Lecavalier was kicked from the face-off circle with 2.4 seconds to go in Sunday's game against the Washington Capitals when he maneuvered into position for the decisive draw and was then tossed from the circle. A moment later, Lecavalier was given an unsportsmanlike conduct minor after a few choice words for the officials and was in the locker room as the Caps sealed a 3-2 victory -- Washington's franchise record-tying 10th in a row.
"Their guys basically intimidated him into kicking me out (of the circle)," Lecavalier said. "That's what got me upset. One of the wingers said something to the referee (about how) I should be kicked out and they kicked me out.That's why I got upset. It didn't seem like it was his decision."
"I think he should have given me a 10 (game misconduct) instead of the 2 (unsportsmanlike conduct), but I don't know," Lecavalier said. "That's his call."
Had Lecavalier simply gotten a 10-minute misconduct penalty, the face-off would have remained in Washington's zone.
"Those guys are good refs," Tampa Bay coach Rick Tocchet said. "I'm not sure really what happened."