By now, it’s well-documented how much both of these teams despise each other. And while the Ryan Reaves/Evander Kane feud has received most of the attention this series, the growing feud between Gallant and Sharks head coach Peter DeBoer has taken center stage prior to the series finale.
It all started on Monday when DeBoer said there had been a lot of “chatter” from the Golden Knights’ bench this series — specifically from Gallant himself.
“Their coach is chattering,” said DeBoer. “He’s probably doing the most chattering. He's talking to our players constantly during the game, which I haven’t seen before. That’s probably where most of the chatter is coming from now. The players are playing.”
Gallant responded to DeBoer’s accusation on Tuesday following the Golden Knights’ morning skate.
He did not hold back.
“I really don’t want to talk about that, but I think I’m going to have to a little bit, because for that clown to say that in the paper yesterday, it’s not right,” said Gallant. “There have been two incidents that happened, and I’ll tell you both of the incidents.”
“Logan Couture, I thought it was an embellishment, so I’m yelling at the referee, not Logan Couture. The other one, Game 2, Evander Kane was yelling at Ryan Reaves between the bench. Evander yells at me, ‘Hey, coach, when are you going to send your big guy out on the ice and play him more than four minutes?’ I said, ‘He’s played 10 minutes every game and he’s going to play a lot more.’ Those are the two times. If I’m going to be a chirper and a loud mouth, I think people know me as a coach and respect me as a coach, and if he is going to yap about that, it’s a little unclassy for me.”
Gerard Gallant went full @bryceharper3 this morning,— Vince Sapienza (@VinceSapienza) April 23, 2019
Gallant called DeBoer a “clown” and “classless” after the Sharks head coach called Gallant “ridiculous” for the amount of chirping he has done this series at San Jose players #VegasBorn #KnightUp pic.twitter.com/LGpTOzWe2H
Game 7 was already expected to be a fiery affair between these two teams, but after DeBoer and Gallant essentially drove a pair of 18-wheeler gas tanker trucks into the fire, expect this to be an even chipper game.
Also, how good is this postgame hand shake going to be now? It will either be fireworks or everyone biting their tongues and trying to keep it — as Gallant would like — classy. Amazing.