Joe Canning watched the post-match handshake between Brian Cody and Henry Shefflin on Sunday and thought the demeanour of both to be what he'd like to see following such a dramatic game. Cody, in particular, was criticised for the coldness of the interaction.
The game had been billed as master vs teacher. Shefflin's Galway edged the game by a point after a dramatic final two minutes. Conor Cooney scored a last play free to give Galway the win just moments after John Donnelly's goal had brought Kilkenny level.
"What do people want? Do they want the boys to be hugging and laughing and joking after what happened 30 seconds before it?" Galway legend Canning said on Wednesday at the launch of the Bord Gáis Energy GAA Legends Tour series at Croke Park.
"In fairness, if I lost a game with a last second free I’d be pissed off enough. I think people just read too much into that sort of stuff. It’s a competitive sport and that’s all it is.
"It’s just a competitive streak in the two guys and they wouldn’t have won what they’ve won if they weren’t competitive and didn’t like losing. So that’s all it is. I’d take it with a pinch of salt. I’m sure they’re probably laughing at everyone talking about it now.
"I think you need to be talking about the good game that it was, because it was a good game of hurling from both sides. Kilkenny are hardly ever beat, and we saw that again. Another last minute goal and Galway done well then to get the puck out and win the free and get the score.
"I think it’s blown out of proportion, and it is what it is. I'd much prefer to see the two guys like that rather than hugging and joking after the game."
Asked if he could see Galway winning the All-Ireland this year, Canning replied, "Why not? Why not?"
"I'd love them to win an All-Ireland," he said.
"I'm a Galwayman first and foremost, so I'm hoping they do.
"I was watching the Wexford game. I was actually over in Boston at a Galway GAA thing.
"That was obviously frustrating the way we didn't close it out. Then the last day, I suppose you're going to thinking this is deja vu again, but we got the free at the end to win it.
"You would like if they could close it out a bit sooner from now on. The lads are doing well, you know, they seem to be working hard. I've seen a couple of them at different trainings and stuff when we're training with the minors.
"I think they're they're working very hard. They have a good workrate the last couple of games, and they've good tallies racked up as well as scoring wise. Hopefully, they progress even further."
Following two years of virtual tours, fans will once again join their heroes for in-person tours of Croke Park as they give fascinating insights into their careers. The tours, which start on Saturday 28 May, will feature both Joe and Cora as well as a host of legends from across the GAA world. Bord Gáis Energy customers will get the exclusive opportunity to attend all tours throughout the summer. The full schedule and details of how to book your place on a tour can be viewed at crokepark.ie/legends