Lightning and Canucks Dedicate the Second Period to Old-Time Hockey
It's a headline the Vancouver Province must've been sitting on for 30 years ...
The Canucks and Tampa Bay Lightning were fighting like it was 1987 up in Lotusland last night.
For the record, the 'Ning nicked the Nux -- and no, that wasn't three decades in the making -- by a 5-2 decision that didn't come close to accounting for the fireworks.
Reflective of the times in which we live, the game's highlight packages were ... shall we say? ... surgically vanilla:
Lotsa skill, there. It's what every sport wants to promote.
But every other sport doesn't feature well-conditioned players zooming around at non-motorized speeds of up to 20mph with the occasional touch of malice in their hearts.
Toss in a dude who doesn't mind the odd blindside or high stick that often doesn't get seen, and players default to what all players in all competitive sports do.
And there are few actions so sobering as the prospect of someone pounding the living snot outta you.
Everyone's more aware of concussions, now, which is a positive evolution, but there are still just times.
Like when a defenseless player is hit in the head.
... dude had to know what was coming, especially since Stecher never returned to the game.
The tone was actually set earlier in the second, when the 'Ning's Yanni Gourde displayed a breathtaking lack of street sense.
Maybe he didn't think his check into the boards by Antoine Roussel should go without a response, but dude ...
- Figure out just who you're squaring up against first, and
- Be ready for a rapid response.
We got a line brawl in Vancouver after Cedric Paquette lays a big hit on Elias Pettersson 👊 pic.twitter.com/OIqMMJkRs9— Hockey Central (@HockeyCentraI) December 19, 2018
Being real, the referees tried to nip all this in the bud when Gourde was rung up for a 5-for-fighting and a 10-minute misconduct for simply being stupid.
The players, though, wanted to raise it another notch.
The fact that Martel didn't get a suspension is just sending a confusing signal, which is one more reason why the participants will continue to handle matters themselves.