It came after his team lost, 4-3, failing to extend their NHL record home winning streak to 24. The win came in a dramatic shoot-out and it was Alex Burrows who scored the goal. After deking Howard and sending a back-hand into the net, Burrows celebrated
by mocking the breaking of his stick over his knee, signifying the breaking of the Red Wings win streak.
Howard beaten by Canuck "idiots"
In the dressing room following the loss Howard, who had just returned to the line-up after having broken a finger, was asked about Burrows' actions and Detroit's number one goalie did not mince words. "I don't even pay attention," Howard said of the Canucks. "They've got a bunch of idiots over there."
Those are the sort of words that can come back to haunt you in the playoffs should you meet the team you trash as they might wind up plastered on a blackboard in the Canucks dressing room. Howard did mitigate his words somewhat by suggesting not every Vancouver Canuck is an idiot - "there are only several good guys on that team, and they know who they are" - but regardless Vancouver has extra motivation should the two meet in April or May.
Vancouver Canucks: hated around NHL?
It is not the first time Vancouver has been criticized by NHL players. Examples include the retired Mark Recchi calling them "arrogant" in November; a player now with them, but then with Florida, Mike Duco, tweeting criticism of the Canucks during he playoffs last season; and, also during the 2011 playoffs, Ryan Whitney of the Edmonton Oilers said the Canucks were "...so easy to hate it's unbelievable."