Tonight’s Three Stars – The NHL makes itself look like a joke
By Chris Savard
When the visiting Washington Capitals were up 6-0 against the Philadelphia Flyers at the second intermission, anyone who follows hockey knew there was a strong potential for fireworks in the third. Especially in Philly. Flyers goaltender Ray Emery has always been a whack job. If Brendan Shanahan does decide to suspend or fine Emery, it will fly in the face of the NHL endorsed star selection he received for his behaviour.
Stoney Point - November 2, 2013 - When the visiting Washington Capitals were up 6-0 against the Philadelphia Flyers at the second intermission, anyone who follows hockey knew there was a strong potential for fireworks in the third. Especially in Philly.
Flyers goaltender Ray Emery has always been a whack job. Do you remember the fight he had in Russia with the trainer because he didn’t want to wear a sponsor hat? If not, the video is below. It is well documented that he has a history of off-ice issues and a reputation for showing up late to team events.
As such, it is no surprise that Emery initiated a fight with Caps netminder Braydon Holtby last night – racing the full length of the ice to do so. Problem is, Holtby wanted no part of it and Emery continued to pound the back of his head.
Caps rookie Michael Latta had close to 200 minutes in penalties last year in the AHL and he simply stood by with his gloves on and complained to the referee. (See lead photo). At the very least, drop your gloves and pull Emery off your starting goaltender! Tom Wilson was already engaged in a fight with Wayne Simmonds, so he gets a pass – but Alexander Urbom, Aaron Volpatti, Steve Olesky and Latta all need to look themselves in the mirror this morning. What Emery did was against the code, but the inaction of Holtby’s teammates was equally as embarrassing.
No doubt, the video of the line brawl will be reviewed by NHL Vice President Brendan Shanahan to determine if there will be any further disciplinary action. Last night, Emery was awarded the third star by Flyers writer Frank Seravelli – certainly not because giving up four goals on fifteen shots was a worthy performance. Holtby posted a shutout and didn't make the short list.
Seravelli thought it was a joke to give Emery a star, just for the hell of it. See his tweet below. Then to really make a mockery of the whole process, the NHL posts the three stars on their website for the whole world to see. Is there not some process where the NHL can step in and not allow this to happen?
If Shanahan does decide to suspend or fine Emery, it will fly in the face of the NHL endorsed star selection he received for his behaviour.
I suspect there will be a great deal of internal reflection this morning:
• Washington Capitals – I bet they wish they had a “do-over” for not coming to Holtby’s defence
• NHL – how can they have a system that allows some Philly writer make them look like such a bush league?
• Philadelphia Flyers - Off to a 3-9 start, 29th in the league and just got pounded by a converted touchdown on home ice. I guess Peter Laviolette wasn’t the only problem.
• Claude Giroux – It is now November and Phoenix goaltender Mike Smith has scored more goals than the Flyers’ superstar.
• Craig Berube – Does he start Emery on December 15th when the Flyers travel to play the Capitals in Washington?
In his lifetime, Chris Savard has spent time as both an elected official and a hot air balloon pilot. As such, FULL OF HOT AIR seemed to be an appropriate name for this column. Savard will provide his thoughts on a number of topics including hockey on this site, as well as politics and local issues on OurHometown.ca. His opinion combined with $1.60 will buy you a medium coffee at Tim's! You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
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