Both of the teams’ playoff tickets have already been punched, but that failed to keep tonight’s San Jose Sharks-Los Angeles Kings game from being a wild affair – so far, at least.
Speaking of punching, an unlikely fought broke out that might just signal how significant this is for each squad, as Joe Thornton dropped the gloves with Drew Doughty. (Not a misprint.)
Naturally, “Jumbo Joe” has seen his fair share of scuffles, especially when he was a regular 100+ penalty minute guy with the Boston Bruins. You can check out his history of fisticuffs here, but I’ll always remember Thornton dropping the gloves off with Ryan Getzlaf during the opening faceoff of a game (and series) that the Anaheim Ducks ultimately won.
It’s easy to say that Getzlaf vs. Thornton is much more fair than Doughty vs. Thornton, as the size disparity in the latter example is … stark. Give Doughty credit, though, as he did back up his words after talking a pretty big game about how much he’d like to knock the Sharks out of the playoffs.
That won’t happen, but the two teams can knock each other out figuratively from the Pacific Division title race and literally on the ice. Ryane Clowe and Matt Greene also fought in the first period (presumably about who’s the best player with extraneous e’s in their name) while the Sharks got a scare – and a five minute man advantage – when Kyle Clifford boarded Logan Couture.
CSNBayArea.com’s Kevin Kurz reports that Couture returned during the game and it was the Kings who scored the next power-play goal, so it seems like a fair result for all. Stay tuned for updates on what appears to be a contentious – and still pretty big – game.