The Edmonton Oilers face the Chicago Blackhawks tonight, a team they’ve beaten twice so far this season. Normally facing the defending Stanley Cup champions wouldn’t be what a struggling team wants to see, but the Oilers have had the Hawks number this year. They will need to put aside all the drama that ensued from their game with the New York Rangers and focus on the task at hand, which is getting some wins, and not giving up so many goals. Yes, there was quite a melee that resulted from Sunday’s game vs. the Rangers in which they were pummeled 8-2, and most of it surrounded super pest Sean Avery.
Midway through the third period of Sunday’s game, Avery pounded Oilers forward Colin Fraser into the boards, prompting Ladislav Smid to ask Avery to go for a fight. Not surprisingly, Avery declined, but then dropped his gloves and punched Smid in the face. The Oilers were incensed, claiming that it was a sucker punch. There has been some debate as to whether or not it was, but here’s a look at the video. The Oilers didn’t mince words when talking about Avery after the game. Theo Peckham had this to say regarding the incident:
“Take pride in yourself as a man. When I hit guys, I look at them in the eye,” said Peckham. “It’s one thing to look at a guy and say, you want to go, then hit him. To say no, then wait till he turns his head and sucker him? That just shows where the guy’s class level is at. “I’ve never played against him before but I’ve seen a lot of stuff on TV. That’s typical.” Montreal Gazette