Let the Kids Fight

The linesmen who stopped this goalie fight between Jordan Binnington and Marc-Andre Fleury are the greatest villains in the history of sport

Think of all the great heels in sports. Mike Tyson. Tanya Harding. Terrell Owens. Roger Clemens. Hell, even Phil Mickelson gets a vote at this point. Think of all their conniving and grandstanding and manipulation. Think of the actual crimes some of them committed. Now, with all that mind, listen carefully:

They don’t hold a single middle finger to these NHL linesmen.

That was the scene late in the second period of the Minnesota Wild’s wild 8-5 win over the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday night. Ryan Hartman gave the Wild the lead, going top shelf over Jordan Binnington. On his way through the crease, he bumped the Blues goaltender, not exactly known for being the coolest cucumber.

This was apparently enough to light the wick of the cartoon dynamite stick. Binnington went nuts, charging into the Wild’s celebration huddle like a big blue bowling ball. Seeing the chaos, Wild tendie Marc-Andre Fleury decided to even the odds and took off toward the scrum. For a few brief, glorious moments the pair charged at each like a pair of Kodiak bears, but then, just as fists were about to fly, the game’s linemen appeared out of nowhere, somehow separating the two without a single punch thrown. Absolute soaking wet blankets.

Seriously though, do you know how often we get to see a goalie fight in the NHL? Almost never. And the thing is, fighting is still legal in the NHL, so why did the linesmen stop Binnington and Fleury from dropping their gloves? If two goons who skate as well as your grandma want to settle this at an opening face off next month, the refs will roll out the red carpet and serve cheese and crackers. But two goalies? Oh no. Can’t have that. People might actually have some fun.