Patrick Roy was up to his old tricks on Saturday night — not by being a legendary goaltender, but by getting heated behind the bench.
During QMJHL preseason action, the Quebec Remparts coach was ejected from a game against the Shawinigan Cataractes after he had an argument with the officials in the first period. While it is not uncommon for coaches to get kicked out for arguing a little too much, this ejection had some historical context to it.
In a postseason series against the Cataractes earlier this year, Roy disagreed with some significant calls by the referees. So when the Quebec coach noticed it was the same referee officiating this preseason game, he felt he was already at a disadvantage.
“As I told my players, I don't feel I'm getting the same treatment as other coaches around the league,” Roy said. “That's why I try to do as little talking as possible during games. I thought it was funny that the league put us against Shawinigan in an exhibition game. They were tactless."
Roy is known for his viral moments as the head coach of the Remparts and formerly the NHL's Colorado Avalanche – including when he knocked over a stanchion while screaming at Bruce Boudreau. By all accounts, the Hall of Famer is trying to scale back on those outbursts and calm down, but sometimes it is just too difficult for him not to say something.
"Maybe I'm the one who's going to have to do a mea culpa, look in the mirror and find a way to digest it,” Roy said. “It was fine up to that point, but when I saw them on the ice, I had a hard time understanding. Maybe I didn't have the right attitude when I left, maybe I should have put it aside, but that's not the type of person I am.
"In my good years, the stick rack would have been flying back. Today I'm trying to stay calmer. I'll have to get over it. Maybe it will have done some good, what happened tonight."
Baby steps. Getting kicked out of a preseason game is certainly better than throwing equipment on the ice in protest.
The Remparts will look to build on a 2021-22 season that saw them finish with the most points in the league when the new campaign begins on Sept. 23.
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