We had witnessed this scene once before in a Canadiens locker room: Andrew Shaw untying Artturi Lehkonen’s skates at the end of a practice.
The first time was last season at Calgary’s Saddledome. How did a veteran like Shaw end up untying the skate laces of a rookie?
“He beat me in Rock-Paper-Scissors, which usually never happens,” Shaw explained at the time. “It was a pretty tough practice there and everyone’s breathing heavy and I didn’t feel like untying my skates. So I figured I’d rock him out to see who’d untie each other’s skates, even though he’s a rookie.”
The scene was repeated Monday after the Canadiens practised in Brossard, but this time it wasn’t a game of Rock-Paper-Scissors that Shaw lost.
“The two-puck drill,” Shaw explained after Lehkonen’s skates were off. “Whoever scored more goals, the other guy had to untie his skates. It’s not like he scored a lot … he only scored one. I didn’t score any, so I had to untie his skates.”
Shaw is definitely a fun guy to have in the locker room.
When asked Monday about Torrey Mitchell, who was a healthy scratch in Saturday’s 2-1 OT win over the Buffalo Sabres, Shaw praised the veteran for his attitude and work ethic.
“So much respect. When you’re like 30… how old are you, 39?” Shaw said while looking over at the 32-year-old Mitchell, who was sitting beside him.
Alex Galchenyuk threw a sweaty hockey sock at Shaw while he was being interviewed.
“I’ll cut his socks later,” Shaw said. “He thinks he’s funny.”
Shaw has been one of the Canadiens’ best and most consistent players on the ice this season with 4-5-9 totals while winning almost all of his puck battles. He also has a big presence in the room.
“Not big enough,” coach Claude Julien said with a smile after practice. “He hasn’t untied my skates yet. So we need to elaborate on that a little bit more.
“There’s always great guys in the dressing room,” Julien added. “Shawsy’s one of those guys that loves to chat and have a good time. It’s obviously one of those bets that they had on the ice. We had Steve Ott here last year that really sparked our dressing room a lot, too. You have players like that that are not just important on the ice, but are also important off the ice and in the dressing room. It’s good to have a lively room and sometimes those are the kind of guys that keep it alive in there.”
Shaw said Monday was actually the third time he had lost a skate-untying bet to Lehkonen.
“Calgary, Winnipeg and now here,” Shaw said. “I got to stop making these bets, I think.
“I think the odds got to be in my favour at some point,” he added. “When I win, I’m going to triple-knot it … tie it as tight as I can. Make him struggle.”