Flames' David Rittich gets pulled after soft goal, promptly headbutts wall

·2 min read
Calgary Flames goalie David Riitch took his yanking pretty hard. (Via Twitter/BradyTrett)
Calgary Flames goalie David Riitch took his yanking pretty hard. (Via Twitter/BradyTrett)

Among the many ways an NHL goalie can vent their frustration after being yanked from a game, intentionally driving your dome directly into a concrete wall has to rank among the worst of the available options.

Alas, this was the route Flames' tendy David Rittich chose to travel after he suffered an unfortunate sequence during Calgary's embarrassing 6-1 loss to the basement-dwelling (but feisty as hell) Ottawa Senators on Thursday night.

Approaching the midway point of the second frame with Ottawa leading 3-1, Sens blueliner Erik Brannstrom retrieved the puck in the neutral zone and threw one on Calgary's net. Rittich, appearing to lose the puck somewhere along the way, looks handcuffed as the distance shot greases its way through the Flames netminder.

Sure, that goal hurts — let's give Brannstrom credit though on that smart look-off play to disguise a quality shot as a dump-in and initiate Rittich's confusion on that fourth marker — but the events that followed accentuated the pain.

First, Rittich gets yanked after surrendering four tallies on 20 shots (he wasn't great, but the group in front of him wasn't either) which is generally about as much hockey-related, non-physical pain you can inflict upon a goaltender during a given game, no matter the circumstance.

After Flames head coach Geoff Ward gave Rittich, who has been quite stellar in his recent outing before today, the hook, the Calgary netminder took the lonely walk down the path toward the dressing room to unwind and lose some of his gear.

Not before a quick pitstop to inflict a quick dose of self-punishment, though.

Certainly a rough stretch for Big Save Dave who was simply not that in this one, but the magical way in which he so brilliantly epitomized the feelings of so many Flames fans all at once, with just a quick, direct peck of his melon, can't be overlooked.

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