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Anisimov apologizes to the Lightning, Tampa Bay accepts

Posted Dec 9, 2011 by Erik Erlendsson

Updated Dec 9, 2011 at 06:42 PM

After creating controversy with a goal celebration against the Lightning on Thursday, New York Rangers forward Artem Anisimov issued an apology to Tampa Bay on Friday.

Anisimov sparked a bit of a melee following his shorthanded goal in the second period, turning toward the Lightning goal after scoring and feigning like his stick was a shotgun and firing a shot in the direction of the Tampa Bay net. Lightning captain Vinny Lecavalier immediately charged after Anisimov that set off a scrum that resulted in 38 penalty minutes, including an unsportsmanlike call on Anisimov.

“I just want to apologize to Tampa,’’ Anisimov told assembled reporters following practice on Friday. “I didn’t mean something by it. It’s just my celebration and, when I score goals, I want to do something unusual. I apologize to Tampa. . . . I never do that celebration again. It’s a good lesson for me… No more shooting.’’

Lecavalier said it was nice to hear the Rangers’ rookie issue the apology.

“It’s good that he realizes what he did was wrong and apologized for it,’’ Lecavalier said.

Steven Stamkos, who was also outspoken regarding Anisimov’s antics following the game, accepted the apology but didn’t want to dwell on the situation.

“I’m sure he realizes now that he can’t do that in the NHL and at least he came out and as man enough to apologize and realize he made a mistake, that’s all you can ask for,’’ Stamkos said. “But now it’s gone, it’s done and over with now. We got the two points and it’s really not that big of a deal any more.’’

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