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No feud here: Babcock, Chelios come together with breakfast meeting
By Mike Spellman | Daily Herald Staff

Detroit Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock

 

Chris Chelios

 

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Published: 5/22/2009 12:40 PM | Updated: 5/22/2009 12:49 PM

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Any rift there might have been between Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock and defenseman Chris Chelios concerning comments made by Jeremy Roenick insinuating Babcock had a bias against American players came to an end Friday morning over breakfast.

"I was sitting over at the pancake place with the coaches this morning and Cheli walked over and said, 'I think I should bring you an apple,'" Babcock said.

While Babcock made his peace with Chelios, Roenick appears to be another matter.

Roenick, a former teammate of Chelios when both were with the Hawks, told sports talk show hosts Mike North and Dan Jiggetts on Thursday that "I think he's (Babcock) got a grudge against American players, but he does not like Cheli at all."

That comment prompted Babcock to phone home.

"The first thing I did was phone my kids - because I have a couple of American kids - I tried to give them a hug over the phone," he said. "You wouldn't want your dad to think he didn't like you.

"The only problem with the whole thing is it's called attention. The players playing in the series and the four teams that are playing should get the attention."

Asked if he was bothered by the whole situation, Babcock was quick to respond.

"Yeah, it bothered me because it's a blatant lie. The problem here is we're talking about something that is current in hockey right now. The attention might be going in the wrong spot - just maybe."

Cheli added his own perspective Friday and tried to clear up his relationship with Babcock.

"I've never had an issue or problem with him," Chelios said of his head coach.

"J.R. is J.R. The NHL would be boring without J.R. Nothing to it," he added.

Did Roenick call you?

"He (J.R.) called me; said he's sorry," Chelio said.