- Regular season game during the March stretch...check.
- Game featuring Olympic medal champions...check.
- Game with potential playoff implications....check.
- Eastern Conference rivalry...check.
- Insane, fight-laden, Battle Royale style hockey game...I hope not.
If you are a Boston fan, that seems to be what the media has been shoving down everyone's throats about tonights game at home against the Penguins. Exacting revenge agains Matt Cooke is all anyone from Beantown has been talking about. My only question is, how is this rational?
You are playing for a potential spot in the playoffs. The Law Enforcement Czar of the NHL will be in attendance at the game, obviously watching every single play with a careful eye. Why risk losing players down the stretch for penalties because of obvious premeditated intent to injur? For that matter, why risk an imediate penalty at all to give the Pens a powerplay and a chance to put points on the board? Eveyone has to know that any retaliation for something that happened almost two weeks ago, no matter how awful it was, is going to get penalized heavily.
I understand the anger and rage the diehard fans have at what happened. If it happened to one of my players, I would be rightfully upset too, just as I was when Downie tried to break Crosby's legs the other night. The sports writer media has been doing nothing but fueling the fire by posting things like this. Or this. Or even this half-rational article here. They even have a poll to see what the general viewing public would like to see the Bruins do to Matt Cooke...A) Knock him out of the game with a dirty hit, B) Drop the gloves and fight, C) Go after Sidney Crosby, or D) Do nothing because a win is more important.
It's playoff time, people. I want to see a playoff style hockey game. I want to see intensity, great scoring chances, great goaltending, and hard hitting. I don't want to see WWE Smackdown. That's on another channel. Boston has one of the Original 6 franchises in the NHL with a storied history and reputation to uphold. For the sake of your team and fans of the game, I hope you choose D.