Tkachuk, Doughty prepare for another round of personal rivalry

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The NHL’s most intense individual rivalry continues on Tuesday night when Drew Doughty and the Los Angeles Kings pay a visit to Matthew Tkachuk and the Calgary Flames.

From the moment Tkachuk entered the NHL he started established himself as a tough, physical, agitating forward that will get under the skin of his opponents while also filling the back of their net. In other words, he is a younger, Western Conference version of Brad Marchand. The type of player every general manager in the league would pay a huge price to get on their own team, while also hating their guts when they are not on their team.

No player in the NHL has been more annoyed by Tkachuk’s style of play than Doughty, as the two have an ongoing feud that has consistently intensified over the past three years.

Tkachuk was suspended for two games during his rookie season when he elbowed Doughty in the face, helping to spark their ongoing feud. Doughty has repeatedly sounded off on Tkachuk in interviews, saying how he doesn’t respect him and will never speak to him off the ice, to claiming that Tkachuk is the most hated player in the league. Whenever the two teams face there is almost always some kind of altercation between the two players, especially as they get a ton of ice-time going head-to-head with one another. On average they have spent about seven minutes per game playing head-to-head against one another in their matchups — that is a lot — while their positions (Tkachuk as a left winger, Doughty as a right defensemen) mean their paths are going to cross quite often.

Some examples of their, let’s say, extreme dislike for one another…

And..

And the elbowing incident that started it all…

It is a good bet they will become acquainted with one another again on Tuesday night.

Over the weekend Tkachuk was a guest on Hockey Night In Canada’s After Hours show and was asked by host Scott Oake if he should show Doughty, a Stanley Cup champion and Norris Trophy winner, more respect. Tkachuk did not miss a beat and instantly responded that he shows Flames captain Mark Giordano plenty of respect, adding “He’s a Norris Trophy winner.”

In 11 career games against Doughty and the Kings, Tkachuk has two goals, three assists and 15 penalty minutes.

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Adam Gretz is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @AGretz.