May 7, 2010, 4:50 PM EDT
The rivalry between the Chicago Blackhawks and Vancouver Canucks keeps building. As much as modern athletes tend to get along with each other these days, it’s hard to find tension as legitimate as the beef between these two teams.
“The thing that upsets me about O’Brien and Burrows is they go and target [Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews],” Burish said Friday morning. “The clown Burrows goes after [Brian] Campbell in the middle of the ice.
“Give me a break. If you want to target someone, come find me or [Ben Eager]. You guys want to pretend you’re so tough, and yet you go and try to pick a fight with those guys. If you want to hit them and play hard, fine. But those clowns are pushing them after the whistle and punching them.”
To be fair, though, I don’t recall seeing Shane O’Brien or Alex Burrows in garish face paint.
Anyway, Burish sheds light on a sub-set of NHL pests. The ones who seem to conveniently prove their moxie one moment and then when someone out of their weight class – or at their level – shows up, they suddenly turtle. From what I’ve read from angry fans, players such as Chris Neil and Matt Cooke develop reputations for “picking spots.”
The anger level in this series obviously rose last game. It’s rare, after all, to see someone as meek as Daniel Sedin throw some punches. Perhaps we can all blame Dustin Byfuglien, the man I like to call “Buffy the Hamburger Slayer.” Should be a fun one tonight.
(Yes, I shoehorned Byfuglien into the story to bring up that nickname again. You’re welcome.)
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