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Video: Last time Kings and Rangers met in the playoffs, all heck broke loose

Jun 2, 2014, 10:26 AM EDT

The New York Rangers and Los Angeles Kings have never met in the Stanley Cup Final before, but they have met in the playoffs before and it got a bit heated.

Back in the 1981 Stanley Cup Playoffs, the two teams met in the preliminary Best of 5 round eventually won by the Rangers. That series didn’t go quietly as the two teams had a legendary brawl during the Kings’ only win in the series in Game 2.

As the New York Times shared, over 200 penalty minutes were handed out after a bench-clearing brawl to end the first period. It was sparked by Rangers captain Barry Beck sucker-punching Kings defenseman Rick Chartraw. Chartraw was being held back by an official when Beck threw a left hook over the referee’s shoulder.

Highlights of the melee include:

  • Hall of Famer Marcel Dionne throwing punches with Ed Hospodar.
  • Ron Duguay’s sweet hair.
  • Nick Fotiu winding up in the crowd throwing punches.
  • Future NHL GMs Don Maloney and Jim Rutherford being involved.
  • Hospodar punching Kings goalie Mario Lessard to spark things all over again.
  • The commentary is priceless including comments saying the fight is a “disgrace” and it would “set the game back 10 years.”

Sit back and enjoy the wonder of early 80s hockey:

  1. joey4id - Jun 2, 2014 at 10:35 AM

    We’ve seen some great hockey during these playoffs. Proof that we don’t need fighting to enjoy and appreciate hockey. If you miss the fights, then you’re not a true hockey fan.

    • dtownbeatdown - Jun 2, 2014 at 12:19 PM

      Who are you to say who is a “true” fan and not? Fighting rarely happens in the playoffs these days anyways.

      • joey4id - Jun 2, 2014 at 12:29 PM

        I am the self proclaimed Don Cherry of PHT. The expert above all experts on PHT, My predictions are second to none. Not even Don Cherry himself. 😉

        Joey knows hockey. And don’t you ever forget or ask another dumb question again.

  2. ajg314 - Jun 2, 2014 at 10:41 AM

    Very happy to never see anything like that again.

    • dtownbeatdown - Jun 2, 2014 at 12:22 PM

      Please remove the sand from your vagina.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Jun 2, 2014 at 2:38 PM

        Dtown, lovely comment. It gets extra points for sexism, rudeness and just general foolishness.

      • lawson1974 - Jun 2, 2014 at 6:13 PM

        Still a correct comment though, despite all that

  3. rich7041 - Jun 2, 2014 at 10:55 AM

    Wow, forgot about this one. Jim Gordon & Bill “The Big Whistle” Chadwick were the announcers. Some other memorable nicknames too: Bubba Beck, King Kong Korab…

    • afce22 - Jun 2, 2014 at 1:33 PM

      hate to say it, but this was the Rangers acknowledging they weren’t as talented but a lot bigger….and it worked.

      I don’t mind a fight, but premeditated brawling to change what the game is about is wrong. NHL was smart to get rid of the bench clearing stuff

  4. heynyc61 - Jun 2, 2014 at 11:09 AM

    I was at this game at the forum. I think it was a 5-4 king win

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Jun 2, 2014 at 2:56 PM

      61 nails it. NYR goals by Hospodar, Duguay, Hedberg and Nilsson; LAK goals by Murphy, Dionne, Taylor, Harris and Hopkins. Full game summary at:
      Next game, at MSG was 10-3 for NYR.
      BTW, I was at the Forum exactly 1 year and 1 day later, for the Miracle on Manchester.

  5. muckleflugga - Jun 2, 2014 at 11:16 AM

    the true hockey fan edict lmao

    who anointed joey with authority to weigh value of hockey fans

    piss off

    • joey4id - Jun 2, 2014 at 11:18 AM

      i anointed myself. f u lol!

    • blomfeld - Jun 2, 2014 at 11:36 PM

      FU Flugga, you ‘retarded’ plankton !

  6. tremblay09 - Jun 2, 2014 at 12:03 PM

    Love that organ sound. Pouet Pouet Paratapouet Pouuuuuuettttt!

  7. twesty85 - Jun 2, 2014 at 12:16 PM

    Joey, the purpose of fighting isn’t for your enjoyment. It’s purpose is to police the game and to try keep cheap shot artists in check. Any true fan would realize that.

    • joey4id - Jun 2, 2014 at 12:34 PM

      That’s what the pro-violence neanderthals want you to believe. What other argument can they use?

      Why are the players not policing the game now? Hockey players play hockey, and hockey referees police the game.

      • matt14gg - Jun 2, 2014 at 3:08 PM

        Because they’re not allowed to and while fighting is way down, cheap shots and head injuries are way up. You have zero perspective on the game. I’m guessing you started watching about 2-4 years ago and suddenly think you’re an expert. “pro-violence”??? The game is way more violent now…it’s just the sneaky violence that you are apparently ok with. Two guys squaring up and throwing hands is far safer than the chicken wings, blind side shots, slew-foots, etc. that are a normal part of the game now.

      • joey4id - Jun 2, 2014 at 3:33 PM

        Well matt. I’m not going to go into debate with you because I have already posted the data published by the NHL about the chances of a player suffering a concussion during a fight compared to a body check. I’ve also posted some findings from the medical community which ties CTE (degenerative brain disease) to concussions.

        “You have zero perspective on the game. I’m guessing you started watching about 2-4 years ago and suddenly think you’re an expert.” Maybe you’re right. What do you say to those who have far more experience than I and are advocates for banning fights? Yzerman, Rutherford, Shero, Dryden, and the greatest coach of all time, Scotty Bowman. To a man they all have watched more hockey than I, can and should be considered as experts, and have been involved as a player and/or executive at the highest level of the game.

      • matt14gg - Jun 2, 2014 at 5:44 PM

        Would you like me to name all the players, past and present, who believe fighting is an important part of the game, and who believe that without a certain amount of fighting the game will become far more dangerous and predatory?

      • joey4id - Jun 2, 2014 at 6:09 PM

        matt, you missed the point. Without knowing anything about me you wrote; “You have zero perspective on the game. I’m guessing you started watching about 2-4 years ago and suddenly think you’re an expert.” because I believe, and this in light of the very recent medical findings, that fighting should be banned. I listed hockey executives that you should know who have much more credibility than I do in essence shooting down your theory that only someone “like me” would think fighting should be banned.

        No doubt there are proponents and opponents. The proponents have theories. “who believe fighting is an important part of the game, and who believe that without a certain amount of fighting the game will become far more dangerous and predatory” Is it more dangerous and predatory in the playoffs although there are few fights?

        However, opponents use facts from medical research that a punch to the head can cause brain trauma and lead to CTE.

      • matt14gg - Jun 2, 2014 at 7:29 PM

        Joey, that was the whole point, I don’t know anything about you and I still know you’ve only been watching the game for very short time and have NO experience with its nuances or history.

        As for your point on punches to the head; of course they can cause brain trauma, but how is that any different from an elbow to the head, or a blind side hit that runs someone head first into the boards? At least in the case of a punch the players have a fair chance to defend themselves. With the uptick in predatory shots, and no worry about having to defend yourself for your dirty play, the number of bad hits will only go up. That’s a FACT. I’ll take an honorable game where guys square up and have a chance to defend themselves from a predatory hit over a game run by predators and cheap shot artists any day. No one wants to go back to the days of the bench clearing brawl, and I’d suggest most hockey lifers would be fine with getting rid of the silly “staged fight”. But to eliminate fighting altogether would only insure that the game will be more dangerous than ever.

        Joey the problem with people like you is you have no experience with the game, yet you want to come in and change the rules to your liking without any understanding of what these major changes would do to the game. I’m sorry, but there are people who love this game and have been following it their whole lives who resent carpetbaggers trying to change it. I’d like to see soccer do away with dives and fakery, but it won’t and I sure as hell have no intention of demanding these changes. The sport of soccer doesn’t owe me anything and if it thinks diving and fakery are good for the game, so be it, they know much more than I do about their game. I’ll just go watch something else.

        And finally, please tell me: if fighting is down (and it undeniably is), how come the incidence of head trauma in hockey is up? Very few guys in the game, right up until the early 80’s, wore helmets and fighting was rampant. Yet very few of these guys are suffering from issues with brain trauma. The answer is that there was a time that the players policed the game, and guys squared up and fought, with a chance to hit, but also a chance to defend one’s self. It’s hard to defend yourself from a hit you don’t see coming. If the predators continue to prey, without having to answer as they once did for their actions, the game will become more dangerous and cases of CTE will only go up.

      • joey4id - Jun 2, 2014 at 8:06 PM

        Matt, I have posted the figures from the NHL that prove more man games are lost due to fights as opposed to body checks. I personally have not seen the facts that concussions are up because fighting has decreased.

        Again, you have no idea who I am, and what hockey experience I have or anything else about me. Yet you write “I still know you’ve only been watching the game for very short time and have NO experience with its nuances or history.” How can we have an intelligent conversation if you insist that what you know about me is based on a hockey blog, and is completely false?

        Let’s not waste each other’s time. Move on.

  8. terrygca - Jun 2, 2014 at 12:49 PM

    The sparring seemed very one sided in the Rangers’ favor.

  9. xdj511 - Jun 2, 2014 at 12:56 PM

    You had to know this incident was going to be brought up. I don’t think we’ll see anything like this this time around.

  10. blomfeld - Jun 2, 2014 at 12:57 PM

    Ron Duguay’s ‘sweet’ hair …

    LOL ! :)

    I remember how Dugay at times would almost ‘intentionally’ miss a pass, just to avoid his ‘beautiful’ forward motion interrupted replete with flowing locks and graceful strides !

    • matt14gg - Jun 2, 2014 at 3:09 PM

      Not to mention the Jordache jeans, ooh la la!

  11. ufostomper - Jun 2, 2014 at 1:30 PM

    Ahh I miss when the benches cleared! Some old time hockey!

  12. 7mantel - Jun 2, 2014 at 2:32 PM

    Shoot the puck Barry ! Shoot the puck ! Ah the memories !

  13. billc100 - Jun 2, 2014 at 5:02 PM

    The only thing missing are the “Hanson Brothers”

  14. johnmr12 - Jun 2, 2014 at 6:42 PM

    I was there. Nick Fotiu didn’t “wind up in the crowd throwing punches”. He was scratched from the line up and was in a suit sitting in the stands right behind the ranger bench. The kings goalie was engaged with a ranger player, and as they got to the boards at the bench a really stupid usher grabbed the ranger player by the jersey. Fotiu leapt over the rail into the bench area and started basically strangling the usher. The cops had to break it up. I always wondered what the heck that usher was thinking.

    • matt14gg - Jun 2, 2014 at 7:41 PM

      It’s crazy the stuff guys got away with back then. If Terry O’Reilly, Mike Milbury and Peter McNabb (of all people! McNabb was one of the gentlest guys in the game) did today what they did in MSG in 1979 they would have been banned from the game for life…and more than likely thrown in jail. I remember it well and it was mostly treated as more of a “…hey you gotta see this…” moment than anything else.

  15. bleedrangerblue - Jun 2, 2014 at 7:53 PM

    I loved watching that. Jim Gordon and the Big whistle. Had to go in my sports room and look at my signed nick fotiu after that. Go Rangers!

  16. bleedrangerblue - Jun 2, 2014 at 7:57 PM

    And Joey I’ve been watching hockey evolve for 40 years. Any true hockey fan appreciates all eras of hockey and how the game has grown.

  17. jpat2424 - Jun 2, 2014 at 8:10 PM

    Go to bed Joey. Past your bed time

    • joey4id - Jun 2, 2014 at 9:24 PM

      Good night! xxxxxxxxx

  18. papajack1259 - Jun 3, 2014 at 10:19 AM

    Only two Zebra shirts! The league could stop it if they wanted to just like NCAA it is a smaller part of the game now but in many ways Guys like Sean Avery would get their ass kicked every night if they played in the early 70s
    I recall Eddie Giacaman? Going after Derek Sanderson and a bench clearing mele occurred with the Bruins Rangers plus Hockey lore talks of Milt Shmidt and Jean Belliveaus constant battles early on
    I like a fight It’s sometimes settles the air of tension…and really isn’t a bench clearing brawl bring you to the edge of your seat?
    Perhaps the difference these days is that these guys are millionaires! What’s the point in fighting a guy who donates 10 grand to your charity and you will be playing golf with come July?

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