In the aftermath of last night’s horrible scene, I wonder: where do you stand on on-ice vengeance? There are several levels it can get to, where do you stop looking for blood?
- Immediately after the play. In this case Connolly was on the ice and went after Hjalmarsson. Not too satisfying to most fans, as a skilled player giving the offender what amounts to a hug with some face slaps isn’t what they want. Stafford, at least, did a solid job on Neil after the Drury hit. Goose, too, after that Ovechkin hit on Briere a few years ago.
- The rest of the game. If you have any sort of tough guy on the roster, this one’s going to happen – a fight with someone on the offending team. Not all that satisfying last night, as Hjalmarsson was kicked out and couldn’t take his lumps, which leads to…
- The next game. Buffalo travels to Chicago on Saturday, which (barring a Stanley Cup Finals matchup) is the last time they’ll see each other this year. There are two games in between, so if the disciplinary decision comes down today, and it’s 0-2 games of suspension, Hjalmarsson could get targeted then. These fights are usually a letdown, though, if the offender is not normally a fighter. Somebody swinging wildly at him, while he covers up and ‘fires back’ a few times to make it look good.
That’s your choices, really. The only thing that can complicate them is a rivalry, which is tough to build up with a team from the other conference. How far do you want your vengeance to go?