Former Caps defenseman John Erskine didn't get the best goodbye in team...
Caps Top Fights of 2013-2014, Number 5
Photo by Caps Outsider
We here at Capitals Outsider love a good hockey fight. There is just something about watching two full grown men beating each other up on a slippery surface with blades on their feet.
There were a few good ones this year. The Caps had a total of 36 fights this season, their most since the 2010-2011 campaign. Eleven different Capitals recorded a fight, and seven of those guys had multiple tilts. The top three fighters for this year’s team were….do I really have to say it? Isn’t it obvious? The leading fighter on the team was the rookie, Tom Wilson, who punched people in the face 14 different times this season. Wilson was followed not so closely by Aaron Volpatti with five, Troy Brouwer with four, Steve Oleksy with three, and John Erskine, Michael Latta and Tyson Strachan with two.
There is something really special about this group. They only had 34 total goals between the seven of them. If you take away Brouwer’s 25 goals, good for second overall on the team, you get nine.
So these guys aren’t known for their offensive ability, but they’ve found a much more different way to contribute, a little bit more of a painful way. So we thought we would honor this group of fighters by breaking down the top five fights of the season. Well, maybe it will be five, or we might get a little carried away. So, without further adieu, let’s kick off the top fight list with number five….
Connor Carrick vs Matt Calvert. January 17th. 13:22 into the third period. Caps down 5-1.
Ok, was this the best fight in the world? Probably not. Did Connor Carrick win the fight? Probably not, it looked more like a tie. Was it the most adorable fight? Probably.
When Carrick dropped the gloves on January 17th, he did so as the youngest Capital on the roster, as just 19 years old, and a month younger than the other Capitals youngster, Tom Wilson. But, the difference in Wilson and Carrick is that Wilson is built like mixture of Sylvester Stallone, Sonny Liston and an Oak tree. Carrick skates around like he’s just having a ball, almost like the little brother of his teammates. That’s in comparison to his teammates. He could easily kick my butt if he felt like it, so I hope he never really feels like doing that.
You would think most people like Carrick would wait until he grows a little bit into his man-frame before he decides to fight a professional hockey player. But Carrick isn’t like most people. So when Carrick looked Matt Calvert straight in the eyes and shoved him in his straight in the face, he meant business.
They were in kinda tight at the beginning, and the ref immediately stepped in to try to break it up, as he didn’t want the 19 year old to get hurt. But Carrick showed the ref that he was being completely serious, throwing a right between Calvert’s eyes. Calvert threw a couple of his own, but Carrick took them well. Carrick did an excellent job getting ahold of Calvert’s collar, while throwing light jabs with his left under Calvert’s chin. Carrick held his own, enough that Craig Laughlin said so. And when Craig Laughlin says so, it is so. Calvert must not have been happy with the way Carrick was treating him, as he kind of got Carrick on his heels and began to unload, bringing Carrick to his knees. But it was Carrick who ended up on top, sneaking in a couple of punches at the very end.
Carrick went on to apologize to the referees and Calvert for his actions like the gentleman that he is. He then skated over to the penalty box to think about what he had just done.
And that’s how Carrick’s first NHL fight went. Not too bad for a rookie.