Hockey fans were taken back to the days of old time hockey and bench-clearing brawls last night as the historic rivalry between the Boston Bruins and the Montreal Canadiens reached the boiling point. I was listening to the game as I drove home from a work function and tuned in to an all-out fracas that saw the officials dole out a mind-blowing 13 fighting majors, three misconducts and four game misconducts.
Even the netminders got into the act, with Carey Price and Tim Thomas dropping the mitts. Puck Daddy has the video of each of the bouts, with the Habs' Tom Pyatt getting the worst of the beatdown doled out by Gregory Campbell, who of course happens to be the son of the NHL's top disciplinarian dog, Colin Campbell.
Speaking of Colin Campbell, he's been a busy bee, handing down a couple of key suspensions this week. Caps fans will rejoice in the news that repeat offender Matt Cooke finally got a bit of a hand slap with a four-game suspension for a nasty hit from behind on Fedor Tyutin. With the league's emphasis on banishing head hits, this is a step in the right direction but I think it's going to take much more for Cooke to get the message (he who directly contributed to Marc Savard's current season-ending concussion troubles). On the topic of concussions, Sidney Crosby still has no concrete date for a return. While we as Caps fans love to diss on the Penguins' captain, Crosby is a huge draw for the game and no one wants to see a player suffer permanent injury, no matter what team you cheer for. And though the hit on Crosby from David Steckel was an unintentional collision, we are still seeing too many hits to the head this season that do carry intent to injure. And Matt Cooke is a poster boy for such malice - next time, the league needs to throw the book at him.