The Kings and Sharks hated each other before the series began, but the blood is both pumping and spilling now. Los Angeles tied the first-round tilt 3-3 last night with a 4-1 win and both teams went at it hammer-and-tong.
Not only were big hits dished out on both sides, but the night proved to be eventful away from the scoreboard as well thanks to a couple of fights. The tone was set in the first period when young Kings scrapper Kyle Clifford took on San Jose’s Andrew Desjardins, no wallflower himself:
Initial reaction from the fans of Hockeyfights.com scored it a decisive victory for Clifford.
At the end of the first period of Bruins-Red Wings Game 2, Brendan Smith gets tied up with Zdeno Chara, and the two spar before eventually going their separate ways.
Chara, widely recognized as the strongest man in the NHL, is particularly amused at Smith’s, umm, moxy at kind of, sort of challenging him.
John Scott is one of the most intimidating figures in the NHL, but that didn’t stop Justin Johnson from having a memorable debut by tagging the Sabres enforcer.
Johnson, a 32-year-old rookie for the Islanders, gave up seven inches and 50 pounds to the gigantic Scott, but popped off the Buffalo brawler’s helmet like a wine cork with a devastating left.
The Portland Winterhawks have dominated the Western League for years now and are back in the conference final thanks to a five-game series win over Victoria. But that last victory over the Royals was a brutal one, with several dirty plays marring the game.
To start, you have Florida Panthers pick Steven Hodges rabbit punching Pittsburgh Penguins blue-chipper Derrick Pouliot while Pouliot is fighting defenseman Joe Hicketts. Pouliot then KOs Hicketts, a small but feisty prospect for the 2014 draft.
But that wasn’t the end of it!
The New York Islanders’ Brett Gallant got to the NHL the hard way. At six-feet-tall and 190 pounds, he doesn’t have typical enforcer size, but scrapped his way from undrafted ECHL free agent to call-up duty with the Isles. And in his first regular-season game, he dropped Ottawa Senators mountain Matt Kassian:
Nassau Coliseum has been the setting for dozens of NHL fights over the years, some of which might have required police attention if they didn’t take place on an ice rink. But the fight that took place Saturday in that arena was different: it was comprised of cops and firefighters.
In what most people associated with an annual charity game between the New York City Police and Fire departments are calling a first, this year’s edition regressed into a full-on bench-clearing brawl in the second period:
What would St. Patrick’s Day be without a surly tussle?
In what has to be one of the more unlikely events of the season, the first-place St. Louis Blues and likely non-playoff team Winnipeg Jets got into it at the end of the Blues’ 3-1 win.
The incident started when Dustin Byfuglien chased Blues defensemen Roman Polak and Barret Jackman into the corner in a desperate attempt to keep the puck in the zone and gain possession off the last-seconds draw. Byfuglien took a slash at one and bodychecked both and the two defenders wanted a piece of ‘Big Buff’ and that’s when all hell broke loose. Read more
Earlier this season, if you’ll recall, the Washington Capitals and Philadelphia Flyers took part in a line brawl, headlined by Ray Emery’s attack on Braden Holtby.
Makes for great debate and entertainment.
The teams have played a few times since that meeting, each one a mashing of bodies selling hate as the NHL does. But it didn’t boil over the same way it did four months ago. Not until Wednesday night anyway. Read more