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Fleury has last laugh after prank war gets wheely Wild

Updated: 2024-04-11 07:23
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Colorado forward Brandon Duhaime got a shock when he discovered his Jeep had undergone alterations in Denver this week. [Photo/AP]

DENVER — Colorado forward Brandon Duhaime has put the brakes on pulling pranks after losing all four of his tires and seeing a garden planted on the hood of his car.

Chalk up another win for Minnesota Wild goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, Duhaime's former teammate who is the master of mischief.

Duhaime started the prank war when he decorated Fleury's car with mounds of unrolled toilet paper.

Fleury ended it when he went to Home Depot on Monday to round up gardening and auto supplies, stealthily slinked into the Ball Arena players' parking lot and went to work on "customizing" Duhaime's Jeep.

Fleury took off the tires, chained them to a fence and placed the car on cinder blocks. He piled dirt on the hood, along with the lug nuts and a socket wrench. He finished it off with an arrangement of colorful flowers and a note that read: "My dear friend ... If you would like to know where the keys to the lock are and the tools to put the tires back on send me an apology video."

Fitting, since Fleury's nickname is "Flower".

"I think the white flag's coming up," Duhaime said on Tuesday, hours before the Avalanche played the Wild. "I think I'm done."

No hard feelings over the antics, both maintained. All in good fun. Fleury even bought Duhaime a steak dinner when they went out on Monday night.

"I think he had some help for sure," Duhaime said of the hoax. "I don't think he can change a tire, to be honest with you. So I think he had some help for sure."

A partial apology video has been sent, Fleury acknowledged.

"He's a good kid. He's always in for a good laugh," Fleury explained. "I would rather do it to him than 'Zuccy' (Mats Zuccarello) who might be (angry) about it. You've got to choose your crowd a bit."

Duhaime was planning to deal with the wheels situation when he had more time. He had to carpool to work on Tuesday.

"I'll probably have to pay somebody to do it or hire someone," said Duhaime, who was acquired by Colorado in a trade with the Wild on March 7. "So should be expensive."

He learned a lesson, though — don't prank Fleury.

"I'll take (the prank) as a compliment," said Duhaime, a fourth-round pick by Minnesota in 2016.

Fleury said he had time to scheme the practical joke after the Wild arrived in Denver early following a win over Chicago on Sunday. He said his Uber driver was perplexed with all his gardening supplies, but helpful.

Avalanche coach Jared Bednar was a bit surprised that Duhaime even drove his car to the lot knowing that Fleury would be out for revenge.

"I was gonna find it anyhow," Fleury said with a smile.

As for getting by security, Fleury didn't want to reveal too much.

"They got busy with something else," he maintained. "We took advantage of it."

So, he did have help?

"I don't want to reveal but I don't want to take all the credit," Fleury said. "A fine gentleman helped me out through the process."

Potential prankers beware: Fleury liked this one so much that he might use it again.

"I like the (pranks) that take time, take teamwork," Fleury said. "So you don't laugh by yourself — so you've got some friends to laugh with."




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