No Shirt, No Shoes, No Problem
March 09, 2020

You know it was pretty good hockey fight when even the coach loses his sweater

We see our fair share of quality hockey fights—or "donnybrooks," as they're called in the provincial tongue—around these parts. Tactical one on one sparring matches. Unhinged haymaker fests. Bench-clearing brouhahas. You name it, we've seen it, and probably even written about it. That said, this latest gem from the Federal Hockey League is a new one, thanks in large part to Carolina Thunderbirds coach Andre Niec, who capped off another wild hockey weekend by sparking, and then finishing, one of the craziest brawls we've seen all year. Take it away, coach.

What you don't see from that angle is what happened after Niec—the same guy who once took a swipe at a ref with a stick, it should be mentioned—waded back into the fray. Thankfully, as is usually the case in the smartphone era, a second angle that told the full story soon emerged.

Incredible scenes, as Niec goes full Happy Gilmore v. Bob Barker on the opposing bench, completely tackling one player over the boards while simultaneously getting his shirt ripped off. Suffice to say, it's a pretty darn good donnybrook when even your coach loses his sweater, especially when said coach is rocking a full sleeve under his lavender button up.

No word yet on when or if there will be any retrospective punishment for Niec or, um, literally any other warm body on the ice at the time of the incident, but fans of law 'n' order shouldn't hold their breath: This is the FHL we're talking about, and if it weren't for the occasional blow up like this, would you even know it existed? Yeah, neither would we.