Never has a clean check looked so dirty. But in hockey, all is fair in love and crushing, brutal hits. Chris Neil of the Ottawa Senators lowered the boom on Johnny Boychuk of the Boston Bruins last night, sending both players to the ice. Eventually Boychuk left the rink altogether, somehow under his own power.
The hit was so bad that when Bruins teammate Zdeno Chara skated over to Neil, with the likely intention of picking a fight, he quickly saw that the hit itself was punishment enough for both sides. The two did later exchange fisticuffs, because it was a hockey game, after all.
In a measure of revenge, the Bruins would win the game 5-3. But only in hockey would a blow like this be as fun to watch as Evgeni Malkin picking apart the Tampa Bay Lightning.