BOSTON -- With 11:30 left in the third period of the Bruins' 4-3 overtime win over Montreal in Game 7, Bruins defenseman Andrew Ference and Canadiens forward Jeff Halpern had an open-ice collision in which Ference's shoulder made contact with Halpern's head.
Ference had a disciplinary hearing with the NHL via telephone at 11 a.m. ET Thursday. The team announced that Ference was not suspended.
Following the game Bruins coach Claude Julien wasn't asked about the hit and Montreal coach Jacques Martin had no comment because he hadn't seen the replay. But Canadiens forward Mike Cammalleri said if Ference meant to hit Halpern and saw him coming, then it was indeed similar to the Steckel-Crosby incident.
"If [Ference] meant to do that, then ... I've gotta look at it," Cammalleri said. "If he saw [Halpern], then that's the Crosby hit except that he looks at him and sees him and does it. I'd have to look at it again, but if he sees him and makes that hit ... then it's, you know, I'm not happy with it. I mean, Andrew was a guy who came out this year and talked about the fact that we need to get these hits out of the league. I gotta see it, I mean, I just saw it quick on the monitor sitting on the bench beside me, and that's how it got my attention. If he saw Halpern coming, then that's a dangerous hit."
Ference said he did see Halpern coming and braced himself for impact.
"[Brad] Marchand went up the wall and there was criss-crossing guys so I braced myself and I saw him coming around and I felt him hit me for sure -- I don't know where he hit me -- but it was solid for sure," Ference said. "He came into me. I wasn't even moving hardly but I braced myself because I knew he was coming by me or whatever, so yeah, it was solid for sure. But he was going along pretty good."
Ference was fined $2,500 previously for an obscene gesture he made after scoring a goal in Game 4.
James Murphy covers the Bruins for ESPNBoston.com. ESPNBoston.com's Brendan Hall contributed to this report.