It was only a matter of time until Rangers enforcer/resident bad guy Sean Avery re-asserted himself as a resident enforcer/bad guy. Now we know that the gestation period for Avery to get back to his old tricks was one month, with the instigator clocking Boston goalie Tim Thomas on the head after a stoppage of play 31 days after re-joining the Rangers.
It was a pretty lowball move, particularly since he pulled it off in classic Sean Avery style; by being overtly brash and then pretending he didn’t do anything at all. Naturally, because he chose to attack Thomas, one of the more fiery goalies in the league, he didn’t get away with it. Not only did Avery get a full recompense from Thomas, he earned himself a penalty in the process, which is standard operating procedure for his gimmicks.
The NHLPA’s primary job, after making as much money as possible, is to protect the safety of its players. So it’s no surprise that after an amateur hockey player died from head injuries suffered during a fight, they’d go to the mat for their members’ health. Hence today’s proposed rule change on hits to the head. Go ahead. Click the link. I’ll wait. Notice anything wrong?
A rule designed to protect players from blows to the head doesn’t apply to fighting. And no one sees any inherent contradictions here? You know the one time when opponents are specifically trying to deliver blows to the head? The time when they often don’t have helmets on to protect them? This rule’s not going to change any of that. But at least it’ll stop enforcers from getting concussions BEFORE it’s time to drop the gloves.
Dallas Stars forward Steve Ott has been suspended indefinitely by the National Hockey League for his immediate post-game attack against Travis Moen of the Anaheim Ducks.
According to REUTERS CANADA, after the final whistle of Saturday’s 4-3 win by Anaheim in Dallas, Ott became involved in fisticuffs with a gaggle of the Ducks, including Moen - whom Ott apparently attempted to gouge the eye of. Video of the fracas after the jump.
Remember the sledge hockey brawl from a few days ago? Well, a lot of you were begging for video of the fracas, and now you got it. To recap: A sledge hockey game (which is played by people who have lost the use of their legs) between the U.S. and Canada turned ugly in the final seconds when an American player crashed into the Canadian goalie in the final seconds of Canada’s 2-1 win. In his defense, though, he’s on a sled. Would you be able to stop that thing on a dime?
The Canucks didn’t take kindly to the whole thing, and a line brawl erupted. And while the brouhaha itself was entertaining enough, there’s nothing like watching three hockey officials bending over to try and break up a fight that’s occuring two feet off the ground.
Video after the jump. The whole thing is Eric Cartman approved.
As if I needed any further evidence that hockey players are tougher than me, it seems that even the paraplegic players are getting into brawls these days. And people want to ban fighting in hockey?
Sledge hockey is played by people who have, for one reason or another, lost the use of their legs. Instead of skating around, they sit on a specially-designed sled that allows for maximum movement and control. But when it comes to getting into a line brawl, they don’t need any special equipment.
Hockey without fighting? What once seemed like total crazy talk is perhaps getting closer to becoming reality. And, not surprisingly, the uproar is coming mostly from the media. But a former NHL enforcer is the latest to throw his support behind making hockey a little bit friendlier.
Larry Playfair has 1814 penalty minutes in his NHL career — many coming in 5 minute intervals — but he told the Buffalo Sabres’ broadcast operation that he doesn’t think the game needs fighting anymore. He joins a growing group of writers who are saying enough is enough after a 21-year-old player recently died and another minor-leaguer suffered a seizure after fighting.
The offseason gives hockey players much-needed rest, but it also builds up aggression in some that only the start of the season can release. Witness the Columbus Blue Jackets’ Jared Boll and the Dallas Stars’ Krys Barch going toe to toe last night, in a rematch of their brawl in January.
According to the COLUMBUS DISPATCH:
Boll wasn’t able to fight during the preseason because of a broken right hand he suffered playing shinny in the summer, and the feisty Blue Jackets forward struggled with it mentally.
Now that’s a man’s man’s man. (Video of the fight is after the jump.)
Sean Avery of the Dallas Stars is kind of like the A.J. Pierzynski of hockey: He kind of roams the ice like a pinball, picking fights with everyone he comes across, hoping that eventually an opponent will lose their cool and (a) serve some time in the penalty box, (b) draw a suspension, or (c) go wacko and retire to an insane asylum for the remainder of their days. Which means that Avery must be pleased with himself today after hearing the news that Ben Eager of the Blackhawks got suspended for 3 games after an Avery-induced fight.
(Sean Avery on the left, Ben Eager on the right, during happier times)
As TSN reports, Eager got stuck with the suspension after Avery got him so upset he actually swung at him with his hockey stick, while Eager was on the bench. “Avery had skated by and apparently said something to the Hawk bench. Eager reacted by swinging his stick.”
Eager will lose $9,677.43 in the process, which will be donated to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund. Ironically, most of that money will be used on players maimed by Avery.
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