An unimpressed Pat Sajak looks on as Ilya Kovlachuk & Mike Green fight. (Photo credit: Heather Mabb)
Now look, last night we took a few shots (a har har) at Mike Green for fighting Ilya Kovalchuk. See here, here, and here. But really it was all in good fun, and we were reacting to something we saw after one take.
Today, after video of the fight made its way to the masses, it seems as if other people jumped at a chance to make it personal with Green Life. Let’s take a look at the comments on hockeyfights.com shall we?
Props to Kovalchuk for pursuing Green who was skating backwards away from the fight the whole time….
CocoQuaker7 states that:
This bout was a let down. Green jumped away like he was scared, then spun Kovalchuk so he couldn’t throw.
intodeep941 observes that:
i like superstars fighting but damn. green is a pansy. this is why the caps D is soft and they cant get past the 2nd round. no tough guys on their blue line
And finally, Sapunka16 thinks:
Mike Green is pretty good at flailing around like a bitch.
Now see, these comments are all well and good – we live in a society where there’s free speech – but I’m sorry, Mike Green didn’t get punk’d last night. To the contrary.
First, let’s observe some photos of the bout:
I don’t see any backwards skating here. (Photo via Clydeorama)
Mike Green donning a Wolverine hair-style, attempts a haymaker. (Photo by the AP/Jacquelyn Martin)
Hey! Is that Kovalchuk bleeding from the chin? (Photo by Heather Mabb)
I’m sorry, I must have missed Kovy bleeding during the telecast as the refs quickly ushered him off the ice and into the locker room. Kovalchuk explained later to reporters that the cut on his chin occurred when he was hit by a puck, not from the fight.
::cough cough:: BULL$%@# ::cough cough::
Secondly, I don’t want Mike Green fighting. But when he’s sticking up for a teammate – a teammate that routinely stands up for everyone else – that’s admirable.
Kovy took a run at an unaware Matt Bradley and checked him into the sideboards near the Capitals bench. Fast-forward to the 51 second mark of the below video to see what I mean:
Now look, I don’t care how many limp-wristed claw punches you throw, if you go out of your way to stand up for a teammate, good on you. This is the kind of stuff that brings teams together. This is what makes good teams great.
Finally, why is a finesse player like Ilya Kovalchuk taking runs at guys and starting fights in the third period? We appreciate that he was embarrassed after getting mollywhopped, 7-2, and he wanted to head to the locker room with some sense of dignity. But with Kovalchuk on-tilt against Matt Bradley and Mike Green, he doesn’t look dignified; he looks like a punk. Whereas the night before, 4-time Lady Byng winner Pavel Datsyuk earned respect for fighting Corey Perry. Why?
Datsyuk, a gentlemanly player who never drops the gloves, hung tough with Corey Perry, who has 40 career professional fights under his belt.
That’s what hockey’s about. Even if the fight between Kovalchuk and Green was amateurish, our boy Greener did right by his team like a true hockey pro.