Friday Fights presented by Hockey Fights

Hello out there, I’m on the air, it’s Hockey Fights today. This is a weekly feature where we will take a look back at the best tilts of the week that was, a fond look back at the fights that were, and a strong finger wag at the worst fight of the week.

The season is born anew, our warriors have iced their knuckles, and ready for another year of hard hitting, code respecting hockey. This week (and a bit) was a great start to the fighting season. The preseason was lighter than last year (down 6 per cent) but this season has already started up 6 per cent from last years number.

Starting off our list at Number Three:

Austin Watson vs Ryan Reaves

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This was a hell of a game from Reaves. An off-season acquisition that was questioned by many, has rapidly become a crowd favourite. This was his first of two fights (and wins) and a goal. He absolutely destroyed Watson here and continued to the Pens dominance over the Preds that night.

Number Two:

Tanner Glass vs Zack Kassian

Make his head bleed!.. Kassian is no Gretzky, and sure the helmet may have helped.. but fresh off a PTO, Tanner Glass takes no time to try and turn the tide in his team’s favour by taking on Edmonton’s biggest goomba in Kassian. Sure the team lost but Glass has a place in Calgary to stay.

Number One:

Marcus Foligno vs John Hayden

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Major Props to rookie John Hayden here. Stepping in for his first career NHL bout and while he wasn’t doing so well at the start, absolutely swung a wild haymaker from the hip and wobbled Marcus for a second there. I think Chicago has a bit of firecracker on their hands in this young man.

Classic Fight of the Week:

McSorley vs Clark (and Taylor vs Gill)

Back in the day when it was just “find your dance partner and square off” after big hits on stars, you had guys like Marty McSorley laying out Dougie Gilmour and then having one for the ages with Wendel Clark. Clark really had no business taking on McSorley in this one, Marty being one of the toughest sons of beaches this side of ever. But credit where credit is due, he took his licking and kept on ticking. Holding his own and getting a few shots in himself (that start was pure hell fire). Not to be outdone, and making the cameraman’s job slightly easier; the secondary tilt of Gill and Taylor was a spirited bout as well.

Finger Wag of the Week:

This is where we feature the one fight that probably deserved two minutes for occurring, rather than a major.

Jake Dotchin vs Michael Haley

Tale as old as time. “Dirty” hit sets off guy and guy starts fight. Except that hit was borderline non-existent and if you want to call this a fight, I’m not sure what to say. These two look like they were auditioning for Snoop Dogg’s starring role in Starsky and Hutch.

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Huggy bear anyone?

If you want to see all the fights from the week, and indeed the season, you have only to visit us over at HockeyFights.com

So that’s the fights that were the fights. What say you citizens of the Nation? Did you like my picks? Did I miss a fight you thought was better or worse? Do you have a suggestion for the classic fight you want to see next week? Hit me up on twitter @TheNationDan or send it in the comments below.

Square up and protect your head.

  • BlueMoonNigel

    I thought the NHL and the media–official and unofficial–were thumbs down on fighting in hockey, declaring it an unwanted and unnecessary relic from a bygone age that has no place in today’s fast-paced and skill-based game.

    If hockey fans absolutely abhor fighting in the game as much as we are told we do, why does FN celebrate and glorify it? Why not the best goals of the week or the best saves of the week? Why highlight hockey fights when over and over again we are told that fighting in hockey is the biggest turnoff we fans have with the game?

    Is Friday Night Fights a swipe at the political correctness that has taken over the NHL or is it a case of giving hockey fans exactly what we want?

      • Roy

        Fighting is not a part of hockey because it does not and has not and will never have a quantifiable effect on a game. And nowadays, it rarely interrupts the occasional game. It’s probably the worst of the few incomprehensibly stupid, yet dying features of the sport.

      • BlueMoonNigel

        How is it a part of the game? If it is part of the game, why do players get a penalty or even suspended for doing it? If it is part of the game, where have all the goons gone? Ernie would not have had to ply his craft in England if his skills were in such demand in the NHL.

        Show all the fights you care to on hockeyfights.com, but get the hell off FN!

      • DogBreath

        Yes it is still a part of hockey (though, barely). Doesn’t mean it should be a part of hockey. Disappointed to see that CA is bringing his to their site.

  • Roy

    This is so incredibly disappointing. Hockey fights are incredibly archaic and a grotesque nod to nothing more than toxic masculinity and condoning and rationalizing violence (technically illegal) as a means of settling disputes. It is baffling and incredibly disappointing to see a dangerous anachronism and a rapidly and thankfully dying feature of the sport touted as reviewable entertainment. Frankly, it’s ludicrous – I thought it was bad satire, but I guess someone actually thought this was a good idea.

    Also the writing and grammar is atrocious. It reads like the author took a few stiff jabs to the frontal lobes himself before he sat down to write.

    Please retire this ludicrous dinosaur of an idea. There is a reason you don’t see Chevy Novas on the street anymore, folks.

    • Bud Poile

      Settling affairs with pushback or aggression is what hockey is-hits,leverage,fights,brute strength,fitness and survival.
      Scott Stevens and Mark Messier,both violent thugs,are celebrated as Hall of Famers.
      Ask Canucks fans how badly the Canucks were beaten up running for the cup.
      Every country either defends itself from aggressors or is overcome.
      Humans take advantage of others,especially witnessed throughout every North American hockey game.
      Gudbranson is a deterrant so the Boesers and Sedins can play their game.
      It’s unfortunate that he lacks puck skills but he is a necessary component on a team with very little pushback.
      Ditto Dorsett.
      Virtanen has a lot to earn and learn.

  • Jordan88

    If you think fighting has no place in the league.

    Take a look at pro leagues with no fights across the world. Lots of rats, cheap shots and star players injured.

    The only thing keeping McDavid from being constantly abused and crushed is the nuclear deterrent that is Kassian Maroon Nurse Lucic Larsson.

    All big mean dudes.

    • BlueMoonNigel

      I defer to the Great One on this topic. Ever since he went Hollywood, Gretzky has championed taking fighting out of the game. He has repeatedly said that hockey will never be a national game in America until fighting is removed.

      NHL is trying to tap into the Chinese market. It will never sell in China unless the goonery and fighting are eliminated. The Chinese enjoy team sports that require finesse and teamwork. In the words of one Chinese TV official, “Hockey is not a gentlemen’s game.”

    • BlueMoonNigel

      The distinguished Grapes has joined us. How thrilled we are.

      McDavid is 6’1” and 200 pounds. He has massive forearms and punishing elbows. He also skates faster than almost any hockey player on the planet. He doesn’t need a bunch of gorillas to protect him like some sort of mobster.

      • defenceman factory

        You can’t possibly believe that. McDavid is an amazing player but is not 200 lbs even with all his gear on. He can’t fight worth crap nor should he. He gets smothered by stronger players as this is the only way other teams have found to try and contain him.

        If what you say is actually true signing Lucic has to be one of the stupidest moves ever by an Edmonton GM and that’s a whole lot of stupid to surpass. Do you think Maroon is on Conner’s line because of his dynamic talent?

        If not for the toughness the Oilers have on their roster Conner would get annihilated every game.

  • Ssseth

    I think this is an awesome way to celebrate a dying art. We all know fighting is on the way out but a good ol’ fashioned brawl still gets my heart beating. I am glad the goon days are mostly behind us but the oscassional scrap with guys who can play and who are willing is still entertaining to me. If you watch the videos, seems like most of th fans don’t mind either.

  • Oilerz4life

    I love hockey fights and joke about it, but admit there is more awareness now to brain injury and concern for long term head trauma. Remember players like Boogaard and Belak?? Issues like depression and addiction that these guys face after the shows over. These guys are heroes and then their stories afterwards are quite often a nightmare. It’s sad because we grew up idolizing guys like this, but they get forgotten about after the fact. More stories are starting to be told in documentaries and such about what it was really like for these guys.

    The game is always changing but there will probably always be fighting in the sport to some degree because it is an emotional sport. The emotions get revved up, especially in front of the net, it’s a fast game so there are questionable hits and that kind of thing. Elbows come up, knee on knee contact, slew foots. It’s not because it’s archaic, it’s because hockey all out and it’s a contact sport. That is where I can see fighting always being part of hockey to some degree unless it is outright banned. Or if hockey were made a no contact sport which will never happen.

  • Cageyvet

    It’s an odd sign of the times for me. I used to watch the Don Cherry collections of the best fights, and a good hockey scrap is still great entertainment for me.

    Maybe I’m getting a bit older, maybe the years of assigned goons in staged fights making up 3/4 of the scraps, or maybe it’s just that fighting in hockey is on an inevitable slide to becoming an anachronism.

    No matter the cause, while I loved the Stecher-Strome tilt, obviously born of actual passion of the moment as they are not scrappers, I find I have zero appetite for this feature. I can’t even be bothered to watch one of the videos. During the heat of the match, I’m all in as a viewer and OK with naturally occurring fights. Hell, I’m cheering the good fights and begging my team to kick the crap out of Marchand literally every shift he’s on the ice.

    Outside of that viewing arena, it’s starting to feel like a bit of a sideshow to gratuitously watch fights from around the league.

    • GER

      I also enjoy players that show emotions from a dirty play and reacted to it, but stage fights are boring and shouldn’t be in the game. I think to prevent this from happening, all players participated in fights should get automatic suspension and a fine. If it is important enough to hit the guy on the head, then it is ok to pay for it. 5 minutes in the box just don’t mean anything.