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Video: Worst fight of the year candidate - Ilya Kovalchuk vs. Dion Phaneuf

Toronto Maple Leafs v New Jersey Devils

XXX XXXXXX #00 of the Toronto Maple Leafs checks XXXX XXXXXX #99 of the New Jersey Devils in the first period of an NHL hockey game at the Prudential Center on December 26, 2010 in Newark, New Jersey.

Paul Bereswill

There often comes times throughout the year when a team needs a spark to ignite them into playing better. For the New Jersey Devils, they could use a spark like that once a week with how bad they’ve been but it is what it is right now.

Last night during the Devils’ game with the Maple Leafs, struggling superstar Ilya Kovalchuk was looking to light a fire under his teammates and got into a tussle with Maple Leafs captain Dion Phaneuf. If you were expecting it to be a knockdown, drag-out slobber-knocker of a brawl between a frustrated star and a team captain... You’d be completely wrong.

Instead, what developed is the sort of fight that sets fights back 100 years. It’s the kind of fight the Marquess of Queensbury roll over in his grave hoping to never witness such a display again. It’s the kind of fight that seemed like a WWE scrap gone horribly wrong. Gaze upon it yourself.
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I’m not quite sure if that’s a DDT or a dragon sleeper that Phaneuf earns the take down with but either way it’s ugly. All told there were zero punches landed and lots of jersey grabbing and pulling as well as poorly coordinated ice dancing. And to think, some people think fighting in hockey is barbaric. Shows what they know, sometimes it’s downright hilarious.