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Superstars Gone Wild

Nathan MacKinnon tossing this dude's helmet back in his face is easily the highlight of the year in the NHL

April 01, 2021

Just one night after Connor McDavid randomly threw a dirty elbow in the face of Montreal's Jesperi Kotkaniemi, another one of the NHL's top players, Nathan MacKinnon, got himself in some hot water, too. The superstars have gone wild, folks.

There are a few key differences in the MacKinnon situation, however. First, it happened very late in an already decided game, as the Avalanche were leading 8-3 with under six minutes to go against the Arizona Coyotes. Secondly, MacKinnon's play was after the whistle, and it was not exactly a dirty elbow. The 25-year-old was simply returning his opponent's helmet out of the kindness of his heart:

OK, maybe he was actually whipping it in his face. We may have read the situation wrong. 

The full clip tells a bit of a different story, with MacKinnon and Conor Garland going at it for a solid 15 seconds. In the process of the scrum, MacKinnon ripped off Garland's helmet and then bowled it directly back in his grill: 

Without watching the game, it's tough to know what was going on between these two the entire night, but we'd assume this was not the first time they met up. Clearly, MacKinnon had had enough, and had he just dropped the helmet and continued the scuffle this would be a simple penalty on both guys. Now, MacKinnon will surely be fined and possibly suspended. 

While MacKinnon might realize this wasn't worth a fine or potentially missing games, he can take solace in the fact that it will live on as an internet meme forever, and you can't put a price on that type of folk lore. It's already become an exquisite piece of content in record time. Check out this thread of MacKinnon's helmet throw with different accompanying sounds: 

The internet ... still undefeated.