Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The NHL pulls out the regulatory DEET for Avery’s antics

The super pest reputation that is Sean Avery’s domain lived up to its expectations again on Sunday, as the New York Ranger not only became an irritating pain in Martin Brodeur’s neck, but managed to have an NHL rule book regulation modified in mid series.

Avery spent a good portion of the Rangers power play in the second period on Sunday acting like some kind of witch doctor/hypnotist, waving his stick in Brodeur’s face, bouncing up and down in front of him in the strangest bit of distraction ever seen on an NHL rink.

It was a strategy never quite seen before, a move bordering on goaltender interference, and more likely unsportsmanlike behavior, leaving Brodeur and his Devil team mates to look on in surprise bordering on bemusement at something that you probably never practice for in the pre game warm up.

While the NHL rewrites its rule book to make sure that the Avery Acting Out studio doesn’t find a few more disciples during this playoff series, we doubt that this kind of review of regulations would have been required in previous years.

We suspect that if Mr. Avery had pulled that kind of stunt on say a Ron Hextall, Billy Smith or a Patrick Roy, that the ancient cause of frontier justice would have been swift and most likely merciless…

It’s a kinder gentler NHL that now legislates its pests, the one of not a few years ago would have seen the offending bug swatted out of the way, humming along to Dire Straits The Bug.

Sometimes you’re the windshield, sometimes you’re the bug…

Globe and Mail-- League takes direct aim at Avery's antics
Globe and Mail-- Few allies for Avery
TSN-- Avery's antics and other playoff dramas
The Hockey News-- Avery, an innovator or a cheat?
Sports Illustrated-- In defence of Sean Avery
National Post-- Everybody has an opinion on Avery
CBC Sports-- Avery’s antics draw response from NHL
New York Daily News-- NHL will crackdown on Sean Avery's antics against Martin Brodeur
New York Daily News-- Sean Avery's antics irk Devils again

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