Friday, February 11, 2011

Did You See That: Goalie Fights

Hockey fighting is almost as interesting as the WWE, without actually being faked. When the tough guys go at, it’s awfully hard not be totally amused by this spectacle. Fights are nearly commonplace with just the instigators; tough guys. But when you add the goalies… not only is that YouTube waiting to happen, but rare enough so that you have to watch it.

Fights are normally supposed to heighten the team’s morale, and get them excited when they’re honestly playing like crap. When a brawl breaks out “Malice at the Palace” style, the goalies throw down their masks and duke it out, in a spectacle of how not to fight – not like I would know – but hugely entertaining, similar to a terrible movie with over-the-top acting.

They start with an intimidating stare down, so intimidating that a deer would be frightened away at the slightest movement. Once someone flinches, they duke it out, for as long as the refs will allow them. Or, in the case of poor Rick DiPietro, you get roundhoused with one punch from the Penguins backup: And I wouldn’t have exaggerated that except for the one fact that it was Rick DiPietro. He’s a poor goalie, and he always seems to have a penchant for pain – the NHL’s version of Fred Taylor –, is more oft on IR than he is on the ice. I can only conclude that this is because he plays for the Islanders, and wants to be exiled from the Island, a la Roberto Luongo…

Just the other day, I was watching Montreal/Boston, and throughout the onslaught of goals from Canadiens you’ve never heard of before, and Bruins who honestly want to hear what the Jack Edwards calls of their goals, there were fights… tons of them. Egyptian protests in Tahrir Square didn’t have this many fights. So, once everyone else except the coaches was fighting, the goalies only thought it necessary to try it out too. They “fought” hard.

Carey Price said, "I think we were just play-fighting more than anything," Play-fighting? That’s what little kids do in toy stores when they find foam swords. Price continued on by saying, "Neither of us really wanted to get hurt, but we are out there doing whatever we had to do, I guess." Yes and Chris Osgood did what he had to against Patrick Roy by going all MMA style on him. “I wanted you to stay with the Habs, and you betrayed them by going to what once were ‘Les Nordiques’!” I assume that’s what he was thinking, but I’m only guessing…

None of these goalies are as good as Manny Pacquiao in fights, or as good as Darcy Tucker getting into a fight with a Philly fan. Or even Sean Avery in changing an NHL rule during a playoff game. But: I have to say that these are why hockey is so entertaining to watch. Do these guys legitimately want to fight? I doubt it, but for the few times we see this spectacle, it makes up for its silliness with the entertainment value. At some point, I truly wonder when these fights will be as common-place as regular fights. But then they won’t be as fun anymore, so… Get the refs!

No comments:

Post a Comment