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Brashear: Carcillo is not in my league

MONTREAL - Those punches Daniel Carcillo rained on Marian Gaborik in Philadelphia on Thursday wouldn't have happened if Donald Brashear had been in the lineup.

"If I would have played, I don't think so," said Brashear, a veteran enforcer who was a healthy scratch for the fourth straight game last night.

Gaborik dropped the gloves first, but Brashear said Carcillo shouldn't have thrown punches.

"I have that sort of respect for the good players and I wouldn't want to hurt one of the good guys fighting them just for fun," Brashear said. "A guy like Carcillo, just teeing off on a guy like Gabby is kind of disrespectful.

"I don't even fight a guy like Carcillo. I don't think he's in my league."

Brashear recalled that Brandon Dubinsky, trying to prove his toughness, tried to incite a fight with him when Brashear was playing for Washington. "But I knew what he was doing . . . I could've dropped my gloves and beaten up on him, but I'm not going to," Brashear said.

Brashear, who has one assist in 35 games and has been nicked by injuries, believes he can offer more than the staged bout, which he says is all former Ranger Colton Orr, now a Leaf, is doing.

But he'll live with coach John Tortorella's choices.

Kotalik denies rumor

Ales Kotalik denied an Internet rumor based on a marketing agent's claim about scrapping autograph-event requests because he was seeking a trade or a release from his three-year, $9-million contract. "Are you serious? Why would I?" Kotalik asked. "I wouldn't hurt the team. I'm just trying to be a good teammate and support the guys."

New York Sports