I missed the Calgary game live but I got a text at the end of the first period implying big things were going down. Asking “What did I miss?” the response was “Everything.”
The hit on Dylan Larkin to end the period was a complete joke. Two minutes for targeting the head meant that the guy who did it was still in the game to score the tying goal. I’m not even expecting a suspension but even if there is one, it doesn’t help Detroit any.
The thing that jumped out to me as I re-watched, knowing what was coming, was the matching minors to Jonathan Ericsson and Micheal Ferland with 1:29 left in the period. Here’s how I see it:
The puck is covered by Jimmy Howard and play is blown dead. At this point, Ericsson is in the slot and Ferland is even further out, a few feet behind him. Ferland skates up behind Ericsson and slashes him on the calf then continues driving towards the net. Ericsson tries to intercept, putting his stick into Ferland’s shoulder.
Ferland nevertheless gets to the front of the net and throws a right-handed gloved-punch at Teemu Pulkkinen, while throwing his left out at Ericsson. Then Ericsson puts Ferland in a bear hug and referee Rob Martell calls matching minors.
Chris Osgood said on the FSD broadcast that he liked the penalty because it was Ericsson showing some fire. I hate the penalty because none of that should have happened.
Ferland is 15 feet or more away from the front of the net when play is blown dead. The only reason for him to go there is to do something illegal. Which he does both on the way there, with the slash to Ericsson, and once he gets there with the unprovoked punch to Pulkkinen. Yet on the scoresheet, that play is equal to Ericsson’s bear hug.
I get that Ferland is a tough guy. Slashing a guy from behind after the whistle isn’t tough. A gloved punch to someone’s face unprovoked isn’t tough. It’s thuggery. People only call it tough because the refs are too afraid to make tough calls so it’s thuggery that works.