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NHL agent rips Julien for handling of Galchenyuk, Russian players

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A prominent agent who has a history with Claude Julien is apparently still not a fan of him.

Dan Milstein took a shot at the Montreal Canadiens head coach on Thursday for his handling of the Alex Galchenyuk situation.

Julien demoted the struggling 23-year-old forward to Montreal's fourth line earlier this week, but Galchenyuk did score a power-play goal in the Canadiens' 5-1 victory over the Florida Panthers on Tuesday night.

Milstein represents many Russian players in the NHL and KHL - most notably Nikita Kucherov, Artemi Panarin, and Pavel Datsyuk - but Galchenyuk's agent is Pat Brisson.

Also, Galchenyuk isn't even Russian; he was born in Milwaukee to Belarusian parents.

Milstein has two clients, Nikita Nesterov and Alexander Khokhlachev, who have played for Julien.

Nesterov appeared in 13 games with the Canadiens last season after arriving in a trade from the Tampa Bay Lightning, and Khokhlachev had a much-publicized feud with the Boston Bruins (where Julien was coaching) in the spring of 2016, which reached a boiling point when Milstein called out the bench boss for not giving his client a chance.

As for Russian players who played under Julien with the Canadiens, Alexander Radulov left to sign a lucrative free-agent contract with the Dallas Stars over the summer, while both Nesterov and Andrei Markov opted to sign in the KHL, and Mikhail Sergachev was traded to the Lightning for Jonathan Drouin.

Milstein eventually deleted Thursday's tweet and admitted he should not have commented on Galchenyuk.

"These are my observations,” the agent told Sportsnet's Eric Engels. “I represent several Russian players, and I know Alex is not one of them and I’m out of line for commenting because I don’t represent him. But I’m just stating the facts.

"I have nothing but respect for (Canadiens general manager) Marc Bergevin," Milstein added. "But it seems obvious (that) the coach doesn't like Russians."

Brisson also spoke to Engels, and told him that Milstein "should worry about his own business and by the way should stay close to it."

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