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Florida Panthers unhappy with Travis Moen’s ‘cheap shot’ punches on Erik Gudbranson

Florida Panthers v Montreal Canadiens

of the Florida Panthers of the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre on September 27, 2010 in Montreal, Canada.

Bruce Bennett

The Montreal Canadiens have plenty of historic rivals, particularly the much-hated Boston Bruins, but the Florida Panthers aren’t one of the teams who come to mind.

Yet if the Vancouver Canucks-Chicago Blackhawks feud teaches us anything, it’s that modern tension trumps historic laundry battles when it comes to turmoil. With 122 penalty minutes handed out in last night’s 6-2 Montreal win, things got a little chippy.

One moment involved Travis Moen supposedly landing two punches on Panthers top pick Erik Gudbranson while he was pinned against the boards and unable to protect himself because a referee was holding his arms back. Judging from the comments made by Gudbranson and Panthers coach Peter DeBoer, the team is not very happy with Moen. (source: The Hockey News.)

''I don’t know when it’s been all right for a veteran to get a young guy hurt, in a vulnerable position, and keep throwing punches,’' said Panthers coach Peter DeBoer. ''It’s a play that doesn’t belong in hockey.’'

Gudbranson also felt victim of a cheap shot.

''The refs hung me out to dry,’' he said. ''I went after him. I wanted to fight him. I instigated it. It was a hockey fight, but the refs had me pinned to the boards and held my arm.

''I could have done the same to him at the end. I could have broken his nose, but I chose not to.’'

Claiming he could have “broken his nose” is a pretty bold statement on Gudbranson’s part. While it’s unclear whether or not the young prospect will make the Panthers right away, the next Montreal-Florida game could be interesting to watch. Especially when Travis Moen is on the ice.