Nic Dowd of the LA Kings might not be a well-known name even within the hockey community, but he may have just produced the biggest hit of the young NHL season.
Toronto Maple Leafs forward Dominic Moore broke the golden rule in hockey Monday night against the Kings, keeping his head down while skating in the neutral zone as he attempted to collect a pass. Dowd capitalized on Moore’s mistake, delivering a thunderous check which led to a quick skirmish.
That’s just an awesome check. From what we can tell in the angles provided by the video, Dowd followed the book and dished out what appears to be a legal hit.
The loop of the hit is pretty incredible.
The Maple Leafs weren’t too happy with Dowd’s hit and, in usual NHL fashion when there’s a big hit, they tried to get him to drop his mitts. Dowd declined despite Matt Martin’s attempt to settle the score. When the dust settled, Martin picked up two minutes for roughing and LA’s Andy Andreoff earned an identical roughing minor. Dowd escaped without a penalty.
Hits like these are what make the NHL great. Unfortunately, the persistent need by opposing teams to try and immediately fight after a huge, yet clean hit remains frustrating. It may be tough to determine whether or not a hit was clean given the speed of the game, but it’d be nice to see teams refrain from always trying to settle the score when the hit is a good one.
The Leafs won 3-2, in a game that also featured Kings’ goalie Jonathan Quick being controversially pulled for concussion examination and rapidly returned.