Saturday, October 15, 2005


Leafs Thrash Atlanta at Fight Night

It's figures...the one Leafs game that might actually be worth watching isn't on TV in the West Coast. I wouldn't take much pleasure in the Leafs beating the Thrashees 9-1, but the fireworks were explosive.

While the Canucks/Wild matchup was OK (And the Canucks played damn well better than the 5-3 score indicates), it looks like we missed out on all the fun.

You'd figure a 9-1 score and a nasty hit from behind by Andy Sutton on Darcy Tucker would produce something like this...
TOR, T. DOMI, 09:34 - Instigator
ATL, E. BOULTON, 09:34 - Elbowing
ATL, E. BOULTON, 09:34 - Game misconduct
ATL, G. EXELBY, 09:34 - Fighting (maj)
ATL, G. EXELBY, 09:34 - Unsportsmanlike conduct
ATL, G. EXELBY, 09:34 - Aggressor
TOR, W. BELAK, 09:34 - Misconduct (10 min)
TOR, W. BELAK, 09:34 - Roughing
TOR, E. LINDROS, 09:34 - Roughing
ATL, R. PETROVICKY, 09:34 - Roughing
ATL, R. PETROVICKY, 09:34 - Roughing
ATL, G. EXELBY, 09:34 - Game misconduct
ATL, E. BOULTON, 09:34 - Fighting (maj)
TOR, T. DOMI, 09:34 - Misconduct (10 min)
TOR, T. DOMI, 09:34 - Fighting (maj)
ATL, G. DE VRIES, 09:57 - Misconduct (10 min)
TOR, J. ALLISON, 09:57 - Fighting (maj)
TOR, J. ALLISON, 09:57 - Misconduct (10 min)
ATL, G. DE VRIES, 09:57 - Fighting (maj)
ATL, A. SUTTON, 09:57 - Attempt to/Deliberate injury

W00T the hell?!! Jason Allison fighting? IF I were a Leafs fan (Lord help me), I'd be pretty mad that he dropped the gloves. Allison is one punch away from permanently drinking food through a straw.

Oh, and typical of the NHL to play down the fight. Reading their game recap, it looks like the teams just had a tiny little scrap and got a little peeved after the game with each other.

Here is 'Jer' of LiveJournal's Hockey group with a recap of the game for us that missed the fun.

For those who didn't see what happened or only saw small highlights, here's an in-depth look at what happened.

Leafs were winning 6-1 at the time. Defenceman Garnet Exelby and forward Eric Boulton had been laying in some heavy hits on Leafs players throughout the night, mainly Exelby, who had two questionable hits on the game. Domi had talked to Exelby in the middle of it, but nothing resulted. Boulton had also talked to Belak about possibly dropping them, but Wade laughed him off and nothing resulted.

Mid-way through the third, Eric Boulton went in on Lindros in the corner and laid in an elbow to Eric's head. Domi, who had been also jawing with Boulton throughout the night, came over and shoved Boulton in the face. The two had words and were about to drop the mitts, when Exelby, who was also in on the play but was not part of the confrontation, grabbed Domi's arms from behind. Boulton took this opportunity to begin laying shots in on Domi, who was falling at this point. Ponikarovsky and Lindros then jumped in, while two Thrashers players [one was deVries, the other I think Serge Aubin] joined the fray. Wade Belak and Alexander Khavanov joined from the Leafs and it was basically a big pile-up, with Domi, Exelby and Boulton on the bottom.

Eventually, Exelby got up and tried to fight with Lindros, who was only interested in holding Exelby back. Exelby took a couple of weak shots before that was over and done with. Boulton was pulled out of the pile by Belak and the linesman. Belak then tried to get at Boulton, but was held back by de Vries. The linesman grabbed Boulton - who proceeded to fall over, taking the linesman forcefully down with him [it was called a 'shove' but it more looked like they both just slipped and fell]. Belak then pushed de Vries, who slipped and fell into the pile. Not sure what happened after this as the camera had switched.

Next play: Andy Sutton rides Darcy Tucker hard into the boards, and the 6'6" Sutton nearly [and some say "clearly"] grabbed Tucker's head and smashed it into the glass as the hit registered, knocking Tucker's helmet off and causing a cut which required 14 - 20 stitches.

Jason Allison, basically the least likely North American on the Leafs to fight, went right after Sutton, expecting the guy who has quite a few NHL fighting majors and who is known as a fairly tough hombre to fight.

This ALSO may stem from when Sutton gave Allison a very cheap knee-on-knee hit a few years ago, when Jason was with the Kings, which resulted in the injury woes for Allison beginning. So maybe a bit of revenge was on his mind.

We never found out, however, as Sutton skated backwards away from Allison, who had dropped the gloves, and basically appeared to be refusing to fight him. Meanwhile, Greg de Vries dropped the gloves and forcefully grabbed Allison, waited until Allison was looking [no cheap shots] and began wailing away.

So that's basically what happened.

Man, that's good stuff. Old Time Hockey!
If Exelby doesn't get a third man in suspension for that little stunt he pulled, I think I'm going to puke.

And I say this as somebody who doesn't care much for the Leafs.
I'm not sure why Exelby would get a suspension for being the third man in when he was the fourth- Domi was the third, joining Boulton and Lindros.

I was at the game and it was hard to follow every scrum at once but Sutton was taken to the box almost directly after the hit on Tucker, who had been jawing at the bench all game. If Sutton had have fought Allison he would have had to get away from two refs, and he was already looking at a suspension for the hit.

Did I mention that Domi's push to Boulton's face involved Domi using his stick? Normally that's called a cross-check.
How was Domi third man in when Boulton and Lindros weren't fighting? And regardless of Domi's cross-checking Boulton, grabbing a man's arms from behind just so a teammate can take free shots at him is a pretty clear case of Third Man In--not to mention the fact that it's bush-league as hell.

And I say all of this as somebody who doesn't care for the Leafs.
Jer's account is the first I've heard about Ex holding Domi's arms. I just watched the video and I still don't see it. I see Boulton hitting Lindros with what the NHL deemed a clean hit, then I see Domi rush in and cross-check Boulton in the face. Exelby jumps on Domi (but doesn't hold his arms) and Boulton gets some licks in. Domi got a beat down for a dirty cross-check. That's a wash in my books, bush league or not.

The funny thing is that nobody is talking about stefan's hit on Antropov and that was probably the dirtiest incident in the game.

And I say this as someone that likes Stefan.
Well, the anti-Leaf bias is a tad thick in here.

Exelby in fact held Domi's arms.

Oh yeah, its generally agreed upon the Thrashers were throwing the dirty hits leading up these brawls.

One more thing, 9-1.
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