|Username||Post: Fight-happy Flyers leave Sens reeling|
01-21-11 07:32 AM - Post#1276368
http://delcotimes.com/articles/2011/01/21/s ports/doc4d391595d604a386 768850....
"PHILADELPHIA â€“ There is some kind of scientific equation that can tell you the exact temperature boiling water needs to reach to blow a lid off of a pot.
What it is might be too complicated to print here. However, the formula to explain a similar reaction in the sport of hockey is far easier to explain.
Take one team that has lost a ton of games recently, whose coach and general manager are on the hot seat, and put it way behind in yet another game it is about to lose.
Take the other team, going in the opposite direction, winning nearly every game, carrying around the best record in the sport, and feeling a little cocksure about its game.
Then sprinkle in one or two checks that could be deemed a little over the line, and BOOM!
That was the recipe for Thursday, a 6-2 win by the Flyers over the Ottawa Senators.
It was the 10th loss in 11 games for the Sens and the 16th win in the last 21 games for the Flyers (16-4-1).
So, when Claude Giroux tried to bury Jesse Winchester with an open-ice hit, the Senators didnâ€™t take it lightly. Nick Foligno attacked Giroux. Darroll Powe and Chris Neil became entangled, and Jeff Carter grabbed Winchester and started throwing punches for the first time in a game since 2007.
â€œI wasnâ€™t doing anything else out there so I decided I had to do something,â€ said Carter, who is now 2-0 in his career with his gloves on the ice.
It tipped off a wild third period with fights, checks, shoves, gloves, sticks strewn. It was, as the guy with the homemade signs behind the visiting net proudly displayed on one of his poster board pronouncements, â€œold time hockey.â€
If this sounds familiar, it should. Nearly seven years earlier on the same ice, the same two teams set an NHL record with 419 penalty minutes, almost all of which came in the gameâ€™s final seconds, as one fight after another led to 16 ejections and just five skaters were left as available on each side.
This one wasnâ€™t nearly as bad â€“ as only 126 minutes in penalties were accumulated. Nor did it feature Bob Clarke storming down to the visiting teamâ€™s locker room looking to get into a behind-the-scenes scrap with then-coach Jacques Martin, calling him a â€œgutless pukeâ€ all the way.
But it did feature plenty of fireworks.
â€œI donâ€™t fight unless I get (ticked) off,â€ Giroux said. â€œThen I just look for the smallest guy on the other team and go after him.â€
Folignoâ€™s not the smallest guy by a long shot. But he was the one who went after Giroux initially, so Giroux decided to stick up for himself.
He didnâ€™t fare too badly, either.
The next shift featured a trio of scraps. Scott Hartnell and Jarkko Ruutu was a quickie, as was Sean Oâ€™Donnell-Matt Carkner.
But the Neil-Jody Shelley fight was a beauty, with each guy firing off more than 25 punches, to the delight of the crowd.
Neil must have been feeling it, because he was one of four players in the game (all Senators) who participated in the 2004 brawl. Of course, his role back then was to ambush mild-mannered Radovan Somik, resulting in Michal Handzus calling Neilâ€™s antics, â€œa complete chicken move.â€
Even Danny Briere tried to drop his gloves but couldnâ€™t get it done before being jumped by Ryan Shannon.
â€œI thought I was going to (fight him) but he didnâ€™t give me the chance,â€ Briere said. â€œI went to drop my gloves and he just jumped at me. I didnâ€™t know what to do there. I was backing off and wanted time to get my gloves off and he jumped at my neck.â€
There was a hockey game mixed in before the fighting started, though. Briere netted his 25th and Richards scored twice to allow the Flyers to jump to a 3-0 lead.
But a late second period meltdown by the Flyers allowed Ottawa to climb back in and draw within a goal.
After hearing it from their coach between periods, the Flyers responded with three goals in the third, and brought their fists to work, too.
Hartnell, James van Riemsdyk and Andrej Meszaros all scored for the Flyers (31-11-5, 67 points), who have the best record in the NHL. "