The New York Rangers are a hockey team.
And, in hockey, there is retribution for cheap shots – especially when the particular goon has a history and recently put one of your guys out for the season.
And especially when the NHL is seen as being too lenient on that goon. Gotta do what you gotta do.
Washington Capitals enforcer Tom Wilson’s cheap-shot attack and injury to Rangers star Artemi Panarin on Monday spurred the Rangers into action at home Wednesday night – immediately.
Just after the puck was dropped, the brawls broke out. In the first period alone, the fisticuffs resulted in 100 penalty minutes combined.
As the game began, Rangers forwards Kevin Rooney, Colin Blackwell and Phillip Di Giuseppe squared off with Capitals forwards Carl Hagelin, Nic Dowd and Garnet Hathaway.
Soon, Wilson’s first shift of the game ended after a couple of seconds when Rangers defenseman Brendan Smith took him on.
In total, six fights happened in the first five minutes of the game.
Wilson’s dirty deeds Monday included a cheap shot to New York’s Pavel Buchnevich in the back of the head, and tossing Panarin to the ground and punching him in the head.
Wilson, who already had 69 minutes in penalties heading into Wednesday, was fined $5,000 but not suspended.
The Rangers called out the NHL – an official statement labeled the league’s head of player safety George Parros “unfit” — and on Thursday were fined $250,000.
“Public comments of the nature issued by the Rangers that were personal in nature and demeaning of a league executive will not be tolerated,” NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement.
Washington won Wednesday’s game, 4-2.