Welcome to Hockey Fights of the Week! If you’re new to this column (which has previously run at our sister site, Puck Drunk Love), the premise here is pretty simple. Each week, we gather up the five best fights from the previous week in the NHL, rank them and present them to you for your viewing enjoyment. That’s it!
Are you ready to drop the mitts and get fighting? Of course you are. On with the top five scraps from Week 19!
5. Austin Watson (NSH) vs Chris Stewart (MIN)
The sequence of events leading up to this fight might be even better than the fight itself. First, Watson and Stewart were jawing and clearly ready to go before the officials stepped in.
That’s when Stewart dropped the gauntlet:
— steph (@myregularface) February 19, 2017
The two were sent to the penalty box and they continued to have what we imagine was a friendly conversation about what the other is planning on doing after the game.
When they emerged, that’s when the video above begins. It wasn’t the best fight of the week by any means, but Stewart casually dropping his glove before dominating Watson in this fight was a clear highlight.
4. Kyle Clifford (LA) vs Jared Boll (ANA)
The fight above between Clifford and Boll marks the third time in which the two have fought this season. You’d expect plenty of animosity between two division rivals, but it has been rather surprising just how quickly Boll has jumped into things in his first season with the Ducks.
As far as the fight itself goes, we’re going to call it a draw only because we have a feeling that this won’t be the last time these two battle it out this season.
3. Pierre-Edouard Bellemare (PHI) vs Micheal Ferland (CGY)
This fight took a good amount of time to develop. Everything seemed to have calmed down, but then Bellemare and Ferland skated to the other end of the rink to drop the gloves.
Can you spot the difference between the player who only has four fights to his name across three seasons and the player who already has five bouts just in 2016-17? Bellemare isn’t a fighter and while he holds his own fairly well, you can tell Ferland is the more experienced of the two based on how he waits for his moment before unloading.
2. Brooks Orpik (WSH) vs Steve Ott (DET)
Ott has quite the reputation in the NHL for stirring things up. However, when it actually comes to backing up all of that trash-talking, his reputation is less than glamorous.
Here, Ott faces the larger Orpik and immediately realizes his best strategy is to tie up the Capitals defenseman as quickly as possible. That plan works at first and it looks like the officials may step in, but Orpik soon escapes and pummels Ott.
1. Brandon Manning (PHI) vs Patrick Maroon (EDM)
Maroon has had himself one hell of a season. Normally known for the physical side of his game, Maroon is making waves for his newfound offensive ability. He has already scored 20 goals this year, crushing his old career-high of 12 from 2015-16. That being said, he’s still a force when it comes to the physical stuff.
In this fight against Manning, Maroon makes things look easy. He drops some bombs with his right while maintaining some good distance from Manning’s attempts. These two previously fought back on Feb. 9 and based on the looks of this fight, there might be some more bad blood in the future.
[If you’re interested in the best hockey fights from each previous week of the NHL season, check out our archive.]