October 15, 2013, saw a defining moment in the rivalry between Western Conference powerhouses the San Jose Sharks and St. Louis Blues. With the ice still fresh, only five bucks into the first frame, Blues agitator Max Lapierre railed superstar defenceman Dan Boyle from behind, and all hell broke loose. Lapierre was suspended five-games for his actions – Boyle missed two weeks with a head injury. Today, they meet again, with the possibility of revenge at play.
Lapierre is no stranger to being picked on or provoked into fights. And I can only imagine what type of names he’s been called throughout his thorn-in-the-side-of-opponents styled career. But I don’t recall the last time he’s been up against it like this. The Sharks may go after Lapierre with an old school self-policing mentality. The Blues forward says he’s ready for them:
Fight! Fight! Fight! Tonight’s game could be one of those old-fashoined scrap-fests you see from time-to-time. Two teams that don’t like each other and can afford to risk a couple points in the standings to send a resonating message to the other is a recipe for violence. The Lapierre incident serves as the cause to take arms. It could happen.
There is an old Klingon proverb that suggests, “revenge is a dish best served cold.” The Sharks may have revenge checked on their to-do-list this evening. But then again, they very easily may not. You don’t see big-time revenge scenarios play out in the NHL anymore, and that’s probably a good thing. Two wrongs don’t make a right, after all. And aren’t we all sick of seeing NHL players leave games on stretchers because of senseless acts of violence?
When the Buffalo Sabres and Toronto Maple Leafs met earlier this season for the first time since their epic preseason brawl-filled, suspension ladened match, there was no substantial further violence, beyond a minor scuffle in the backend of a home-and home that led to Dion Phaneuf being called a princess. But no major punches were thrown. And that game involved two teams loaded with enforcers, one of which is basically playing for a first overall draft pick next summer.
Today’s game is a clash of two top teams in the NHL. Both are having incredible seasons, and both are on a mission to prove their doubters wrong by winning a Stanley Cup next spring. There is a very strong possibility these two clubs may face each other in the Western Conference final when Round 3 begins in late May of 2014. Violence is possible today, but high-speed entertainment and skill is a sure bet. This measuring stick game will give us who love to analyze and speculate a great sample as to where each of these great teams is at, on the grand scheme of things, in comparison to the other.
— St. Louis Blues (@StLouisBlues) November 29, 2013