Jeff Skinner and the Gamma Rays of Hockey

Happy February 14th Caniacs! Today is that special holiday which I like to call “Tuesday.” In celebration of “Tuesday,” I bring you a post with a love theme! Oh for goodness sakes. Don’t stop reading. You didn’t actually believe me did you? You should know better by now Caniacs.

The only love-related thing I am here to talk about is whether our boys are lovers or fighters. Wait! That isn’t coming out right either. Fights! I am here to talk about fights! And anger management! And apparently I am very enthusiastic about it!

As you may have heard me say before, I am not a big proponent of fighting. I have little use for staged fights in games, but I understand policing the ice and standing up for teammates and for yourself when the situation calls for it. (i.e. I  would not cry if someone sent a P.K. Subban a message.) Acknowledging that however does not in any way diminish the heart attack I had on Sunday during the Checkers’ 3-1 loss to the Norfolk Admirals. I tweeted my feelings so eloquently during the game:

@Esbee92 WHY IS ZAC DALPE FIGHTING?!

Yes. Bruiser Zac Dalpe has now added another fight to his tally of 2 career fights!  Alexandre Picard was pushing around Evgenii Dadonov and then he threw in a few little extra shoves on Mr. Dalpe. Zac finally had enough and started wailing on Picard. I may have yelled “GET EM DALPS!” at my TV. The fight was totally justified and by this point in the game, getting five for fighting or even a game misconduct was of little consequence.

I can’t really discuss our pugilists though without mentioning that brawler Jeff Skinner. Skinner continues to get mugged on the ice, as the referees seem to be hesitant to call many penalties on those who face him. This is forcing the sophomore to toughen up, but it is also causing lots of frustration for young Skinny. Last night, in a sight that has become more familiar, Jeff Skinner lost his cool. The incendiary incident occurred off-camera but he and David Desharnais both spent 2 minutes in their respective penalty boxes for unsportsmanlike conduct. Skinner returned to the box later in the game for high-sticking P.K. Subban. It’s hard to blame him when Subban had him wrapped up like a pretzel with his free arm.

But I am afraid Mr. Skinner is going to have to learn to get ahold of his temper. Other teams are getting his number. The more upset he gets the more they are going to agitate him, and I have little faith that the referees are going to offer him any shelter. We can’t afford to have Skinner watching from the penalty box or the press box with a broken hand. It’s easy to forget Skinner is only 19 because of his amazing skill. Unfortunately this is a grown-up lesson he is going to have to learn. I hope the veterans on the team and Coach Muller can impart some wisdom and help him harness his temper for good not evil. You don’t want to see Jeff Skinner angry. You wouldn’t like him when he’s angry.

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Tags: Alexandre Picard David Desharnais Fight Card Fighting Fights Jeff Skinner Kirk Muller PK Subban Staged Fights The Incredible Hulk Zac Dalpe

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