Saturday's physical game between the Sharks and Vegas Golden Knights featured a number of big hits and a few scuffles, as the fierce rivalry between the teams remains as fiery as ever.
Radim Simek drew a pair of brutal hits from Vegas center Jonathan Marchessault, the second of which knocked the Sharks defenseman out of the game. Simek was placed on injured reserve following the game with an "upper-body injury."
Sharks coach Bob Boughner wasn't happy that none of Simek's Sharks teammates came to his defense following the hit, and spoke Monday about how he's handling the issue in the coming days.
“The initial hit you can argue is a little bit high, but I think it’s the nature of the hit, I think it was retaliatory,” Boughner said (h/t Bay Area News Group's Curtis Pashelka). “I thought that [Simek] was physical on Smith on the first shoulder-to-shoulder puck battle. It looked like Marchessault came in, keying on Simmer and the hit.
“Again, my issue is more the second time around when Simmer was already stung that he came in and added insult to injury, and that’s on us. I mean, it looked to me like someone taking a shot at one of our players and I didn’t like our response. That’s something we are addressing.
“We need to be a tight team, both on and off the ice and (the Simek/Marchessault incident is) an example of being able to get in there, first home game, establishing some identity,” Boughner said. “I understand the game is tight at that point, but you need a response (then) or somewhere else in the game. You can’t let other teams take liberties and that’s something that we will be addressing.”
Vegas won the first matchup of the season 3-1, and with the next clash between the rivals just 10 days away, expect plenty of physicality on Feb. 25 at SAP Center.