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Gary Bettman isn’t bothered by Bruce Boudreau’s potty mouth


James O’Brien

During the first episode of HBO’s coverage of the buildup toward the 2011 Winter Classic, Bruce Boudreau provided a profanity-soaked rant that made many wonder if he kissed his mother with that mouth. Actually, his mom was much more likely to scold him than give him a smooch after the tirade.

While momma Boudreau was displeased by the f-bomb festival, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman might go as far as to relish the attention-grabbing gabbing from Gabby.

We are talking about hockey here, after all. The standard mental image many people conjure when discussing a puckhead is a rugged Canadian farmhand who lacks more than a couple teeth. It’s hard to imagine such a customer substituting adult language with an “Oh, gosh” or “Golly, guys, get it together” right? Bettman seems to understand that.

But Bettman called it a natural part of “the ultimate reality show.”

“You’re watching a team and in particular a coach going through a very difficult time,” Bettman said at a media breakfast Tuesday to promote the Winter Classic between the two teams. “No one in this room is prudish enough to think that locker room language isn’t coarse.”

The commissioner added, “Both teams have handled themselves beautifully.”