Here are the finalists for’s “Fight of the Year”


Over at, voting is underway for the website’s annual award series.

While there’s a plethora of intriguing categories — the Grimson Award for Best Punching Power/Most Destructive Fighter is a good one — the marquee event is, of course, Fight of the Year.

This season’s field has been whittled down to five worthy candidates.

They are:

Tanner Glass vs. Cody McCormick

Jay Rosehill vs. Brian McGrattan

Eric Boulton vs. Chris Neil

Cam Janssen vs. Micheal Haley

Mike Brown vs. Kris Newbury

Feel free to add your vote, thoughts or alternate fight candidate in the comments section below.

Alzner wisely balks at notion of fighting Lucic


Washington Capitals defenseman Karl Alzner is listed at around 206 lbs., which only puts him about 15 behind Boston Bruins behemoth Milan Lucic depending upon the source. So in the most superficial way, he could probably drop the gloves with his increasingly hated rival if he wanted to.

Luckily for Alzner and the Capitals defense corps as a whole, he’s wise enough to avoid such a scenario, as he told’s Joe Haggerty.

“It was funny because I said something on twitter a while ago that ‘if [Alzner and Lucic] were ever to fight I’d obviously win…haha.’ With “haha” being obvious sarcasm,” Alzner said. “I don’t think anybody understood that, but he is not a guy that I would want to fight. That’s for sure.”

“He’s got to be one of the top 10 one of the toughest guys in the league pound-for-pound and everybody knows that.”

Lucic isn’t one of the league’s most frequent fighters, but he’s easily one of the most feared power forwards in the NHL. Considering the fact that Hockey Fights credits Alzner with exactly one NHL fight (a “loss” to Steve Downie on Jan. 13), it’s good to know he’s self-aware enough to realize that he should keep his gloves on no matter how heated the yapping gets.

Video: CNBC Sports Biz debates merits of fighting


The New Jersey Devils and New York Rangers grabbed headlines when three players dropped gloves at the three second mark this week. John Tortorella and Peter DeBoer traded verbal jabs while many were delighted by the medieval bit of on-ice violence.

But what about the mainstream perspective? To see how people reacted outside the “hockey bubble,” check out this video from CNBC Sports Biz:

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Rangers, Devils engage in three fights in first three seconds


This is the last time the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils will meet this season, but if they face off in the playoffs, they won’t need to reach deep into the history of their rivalry to fuel some hate. The two teams’ coaches were jawing each other from the start and, as it turns out, for good reason.  (Devils coach Peter DeBoer did a great job of capturing the hate.)

Three different fights took place three seconds into the game – totaling in 40 penalty minutes. You can witness the carnage in the video below, highlighted by the blood oozing from Ryan Carter’s head:

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Stu Bickel, Carter, Brandon Prust, Cam Janssen, Eric Boulton and Mike Rupp were involved in the fight, with Bickel getting a game misconduct.

A history of violence

Dropping gloves off the bat isn’t exactly uncommon between these two teams. I looked back at the box scores to chart the history of violence in the season series, with an emphasis on early tussles.

Dec. 20 (at New Jersey): Rupp and Janssen fought three seconds in; Boulton, Clarkson, Brandon Dubinsky and Ryan Callahan were involved in fights 1:47 in as well.

Jan. 31 (at NJ): Pacifism!

Feb. 7 (at Madison Square Garden): Rupp, Janssen, Boulton and Prust dropped the gloves two seconds in.

Feb. 27 (at MSG):  Pacifism – until the second period, when Clarkson, Boulton, Prust and Rupp mixed it up.

March 6 (at NJ): They took a little longer to “warm up” or get on the ice, as Carter and Dubinsky fought three minutes in and John Scott fought Cam Janssen midway through the first.


As you can see, early fights aren’t unusual – they’re practically like filing paperwork. Still, three fights at the three-second mark? That’s a heck of a finale.

Leafs GM Burke: “The rats will take this game over”


A day after making the decision to put little-used pugilist Colton Orr on waivers, Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke took to the pulpit today and bemoaned the death of the hockey enforcer. Burke was not only upset about potentially ending Orr’s career — “my admiration for this kid just knows no limits,” he said — but also the current state of the NHL.

“I do wonder where our game is going,” Burke said. “I know the Greenpeace folks will be happy with this, but I wonder where we’re going when Brendan Shanahan’s got six hearings every two days.

“I wonder about the accountability in our game. I wonder where we’re going with it. That’s the only lament I have on this. The fear that if we don’t have guys looking after each other than the rats will take this game over. That’s my fear.

“I see guys that run around and start stuff and won’t back it up and it makes me sick to my stomach.”

It was in 2009 when Burke raised a few eyebrows by signing Orr to a four-year, $4 million deal — a substantial investment in a player with a slim NHL resume…that couldn’t really play hockey.

For his career, Orr has played in 378 NHL contests and registered 11 goals, nine assists, a minus-34 rating and 921 penalty minutes. He’s appeared in just five games for the Leafs this season, though part of that is due to a myriad of injuries, including a concussion that cost him half of last season.

In related news, Orr has cleared waivers and will now suit up for Toronto’s AHL affiliate, the Marlies.