November 21, 2010
What made Ron Hextall a special goaltender during his NHL career, and especially for the Philadelphia Flyers, was the way he could lead by example with a huge performance in goal or fire up his team with a physical altercation with an opponent.
Last night, Binghamton Senators goalie Barry Brust (property of the Ottawa Senators) got his Hexy on against the Hartford Wolf Pack (the New York Rangers' AHL affiliate), stopping 40 shots and playing the role of enforcer in his team's 3-2 overtime loss.
The B-Sens' play of the night came in their own end, when Brust left his net with 1:32 left in regulation to chase down Hartford center Tim Kennedy(notes) after a vicious hit from behind on B-Sens defenseman Derek Smith(notes) that earned Kennedy a boarding penalty.
Brust chased Kennedy up the ice and, when he caught him, shoved his glove and blocker into the forward's face and knocked him to the ground, a move [Coach Kurt] Kleinendorst said he "100 percent, absolutely" supported.
"It's a shame that he had to, that he was the one who had to realize something needed to be done," Kleinendorst said. "But it doesn't surprise me. I think he would have chased the guy down to the far blue line if he had to, but that's a good thing."
Said Brust after the game: "You can't hit guys from behind. I was the closest one to him, I guess, so actions speak louder than words."
Ms. Conduct, who pointed out that the fans were chanting Brust's name after the incident, offered her review:
First time I watched it, I wondered how long he was going to end up chasing him. Wouldn't you love to be in Kennedy's head when he's spun around and face to face with GIANT ANGRY GOALIE?
Brust is listed as 6-2, 210; Kennedy at 5-10, 170. And only one of them was in full goalie gear. Hextall would be proud.