February 23, 2009
As we've said before, nothing brings out the sensitivity and tenderness of a hockey fight like a pink jersey. The Southern Professional Hockey League's Columbus Cottonmouths and Twin City Cyclones really put that theory to the test over the weekend during the Cyclones' "Ladies Night/Pink in the Rink," an event that supports Susan G. Komen NC Triad Affliate and breast cancer awareness: Do pink jerseys make for a better bench-clearing brawl?
This one takes a little while to get percolating, but it picks up when a Cottonmouths player rushes the ice around the one-minute mark. Then it's a sticks-and-gloves-flying brawl between one team dressed like the baby Sabres and another team in pink sweaters and knee-high white socks. Hey, if Spicoli can win an Oscar for playing a gay mayor ... *
The action picks up again at the 2:19 mark with a goalie fight that actually makes the rest of the players stop and watch for a moment ... before the fights start again.
With 2:39 left in the period, one of the Cyclones hit goaltender Ian Vigier's stick and his teammates took exception. Pushing and shoving started near the Snakes goal. Another scrum broke out in front of the Cottonmouths bench.
Soon the first true line brawl in the team's five-year SPHL tenure broke out. Players from both clubs left the benches. Snakes' goaltender Chad Rycroft was in the locker room getting equipment repaired. Rycroft came storming on to the ice and dropped the gloves with Twin City backup Kevin Druce.
Fights broke out all over the ice and it took a while for referee Justin Brown and his linesmen to restore order. Brown wisely cleared the ice and postponed playing the remaining 2:39. The officials retreated to their dressing room to sort out the penalties. The second period was concluded after the early intermission, a brief break taken and the third period began.
* Four best things about the Oscars last night: Sean Penn's post-show press conference; the "Pineapple Express" film review; Natalie and Portman.