Mar 13, 2012, 11:01 PM EDT
What happens when a forward known for crease crashing gets shoved into a future Hall of Fame goalie? A trip to the box for the forward, of course. Even if it happens twice in one game, which was the case in the Flyers’ 3-0 win over the Devils on Tuesday.
In the second period, Scott Hartnell was shoved from behind into Martin Brodeur, who hit the deck. Despite the ref being right behind them, only Hartnell was sent to the penalty box. Then, with just 5 minutes left in the third, Hartnell skated in close to the crease, but didn’t make contact with Brodeur until again pushed into him. And again, he was called for goalie interference.
Check out the video below, including some roughing footage that didn’t air on TV because the telecast went to commercial.
Now, you reap what you sow, and all that. Hartnell’s reputation is well-earned, despite his emergence as an All-Star and leading goal scorer this season. And, he likes to cut it pretty close to goalies, if not occasionally crash them.
The first call washed out a Flyers power play that admittedly was also a partially blown call on Ilya Kovalchuk. Shortly after Sean Couturier scored the opening goal, he gave Kovalchuk some stickwork to the mid-section. Kovalchuk reacted, and drew the penalty. We didn’t see what started all that, but it should have probably been coincidental minors. So we can’t get too upset over what amounts to a makeup call on the first Hartnell play, whether that was the ref’s intention or not.
But twice in one game? Come on…
On the second, Eric Boulton ended up in the box along with Hartnell because even he thought the penalty was on the Devils. Boulton then proceeded to act a fool, thinking the damage was already done. Meanwhile, he was evening up the calls, and ruining what would have been a huge power play late in the game for New Jersey. Per Tom Gulitti’s Fire and Ice blog:
Devils left wing Eric Boulton mistakenly thought his team was about to be shorthanded when the officials stopped play with 5:13 left in the third period, so he went after Philadelphia’s Claude Giroux in hope that a Flyer would take a penalty to even things up. Boulton didn’t realize that Flyers left wing Scott Hartnell had been called for goaltender interference and ended up with an unsportsmanlike conduct minor that negated a Devils’ power play.“Apparently, there was a delayed penalty on them and I thought we took a penalty, so I tried to stir things up with (Claude) Giroux to try and even it up,” Boulton said. “We were getting the power play, but I thought we were going to be down. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have done that. It was a mistake on my part to do that.“Then, Hartnell came in to try to be tough when the refs were in there. The refs were already in, so that’s why he’s tough.”
Keep up the chatter, Boulton. While you’re taking shots at a 30-goal scorer, they’re playing the Knock-Knock song in the other dressing room.
With the teams at 4 a side, the Devils pulled Brodeur, which enabled Danny Briere’s slump-busting empty netter.
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