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Leafs 2 v. Rangers 3 (SO): Groundhog Day

Other commitments prevented me from watching this game but it was probably for the best as the stress would have probably killed me. I hate Sean Avery and judging from the description of his antics he was on top of his game. Belak especially was raring to go:

"The league should do something, especially with that warmup crap. The instigator rule protects guys like that. He'll fight little guys like Darcy but you'll never see him pick on bigger guys like me and then drop the gloves.

Belak has a point. In the last week or so Avery has tried to get Zach Parise to fight (0 career fights) and actually fought Mike Richards (11  career fights). The latter, after some investigation on Hockey Fights appears a lot more legitimate than I had previously thought. Now I can't find the article with the quotation from Avery but it was high comedy and to the effect of "I've been called classless before and I will be called it again." Not that just repeating something makes it true (see: Habs are cup contenders in early November) but here's a clue that Avery might just be as despicable as everyone says:

"Darcy's an agitator but he doesn't say the type of personal stuff about your family that Avery does. It's ridiculous. If (Avery) ever starts chirping about my family like that, he'll get a stick over the head."

The other storyline from the game is that Pavel Kubina is out indefinitely with an injury to his MCL. Not to mention that he has been nursing a broken finger. The poor guy has been finally proving his worth after a tough first season and he will probably be out for four weeks. It's a three horse race to replace Kubina in the lineup between Anton Stralman, Staffan Kronwall (my choice), and Derrick Walser. "Who?" you might ask? well The Muppet at The Battle of Ontario did a little digging:

I dug up his line on

"Has a wealth of offensive flair. Understands his role on the power play and displays good hockey sense. Flaws: Is undersized for the defense position in the NHL and lacks defensive acumen."

Ok then. Stralman it is.

Since I didn't see the game I open the floor to nominations for player of the game although I am guessing that Poni's 2 goal performance will be enough to get him in the race for the coveted end of year award but if you disagree make your case.