Only In Hockey Can A Playoff Game Feature Everyone On The Ice Fighting Each Other

  • Matt Rudnitsky

The Montreal Canadiens got feisty at the Ottawa Senators in last night’s NHL Playoffs. The Sens started scoring lots of goals, which was unfamiliar territory for them. They were especially fired up, and the Habs were angry. Ottawa scoring six goals in a game is akin to the New York Jets scoring 35 points in a game, though, so Montreal probably should’ve cut Ottawa some slack.

The teams showed just how much they dislike each other in the third period of Game 3 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series Sunday night, combining for 210 of the game’s 236 penalty minutes over the final period of Ottawa’s 6-1 victory at Scotiabank Place.

Note: there are 60 minutes in an NHL hockey game.

When Kyle Turris scored to make it 4-1 for the Senators at 7:00 of the third, Canadiens coach Michel Therrien sent out Ryan White, Travis Moen, Colby Armstrong, Francis Bouillon and Jarred Tinordi for the faceoff. MacLean countered with Chris Neil, Matt Kassian, Zack Smith, Jared Cowen and Chris Phillips.

Right after the puck was dropped, White slashed Smith in the back of the leg and bedlam ensued.

The ensuing bedlam:

At that point, the Senators had 10 players available and the Canadiens had 11, leaving lots of empty space on both benches.

All five players on the ice got into fights – with the Senators coming out ahead in all of them – and eight players received game misconducts. The only two who weren’t thrown out according to the official scoresheet were Cowen and, strangely, White, though neither played another shift.

Senators coach Paul MacLean even called a timeout with 17 seconds left in a 6-1 game, which prompted Habs coach Michel Therrien to claim MacLean was trying to embarrass the Habs.

When told that Therrien accused him of trying to humiliate the Canadiens, MacLean fired right back.

“I think they were doing a pretty good job of that themselves,” he said. “They didn’t need my help at all.”

Was there a Civil War in Canada? This modern version continues with Game 4, on Tuesday night in Ottawa.